In this month of gratitude, we have asked many people to share themselves with GRACE and our community. We usually do the asking -- but Carlea asked me this time to share my thoughts of gratitude. Sometimes writing these things is a struggle.
On a flight home last week I watched a movie called ‘Are You Here’, about two childhood friends... I was struck by the following lines midway through.
“Nobody believes in friendship; people talk about it, you see it on TV, people drop by, they go to the doctor together. No one eats alone but most people are alone. That’s the thing about friendship, it’s a lot rarer than love. Because there is nothing in it for anybody.”
Melissa gave me a level of sisterly love that I have yet to find in any other friendship. It was a friendship that went beyond. I hate how her story ended, and I get a bit despondent sometimes. There is a pain that never goes away.
So what am I grateful for?
For me, I will never accept that everything happens for a reason. There could never be a reason big enough or that made enough sense to justify what I have seen, or what many of the lovely people reading this have gone through or are going through.
I am grateful that my path led me here, to witness the volumes of good people in the world.
I am grateful for clarity. I feel I can not be and never will be again clouded by thoughts that just don’t matter.
I was recently at a conference with my husband where spouses were invited. I’m not good at these things and in a private discussion with my husband, I voiced my opinion. I saw his face fall and I saw the disappointment. He enjoys the digging and the exploration of self.
I tried to make him understand – “It’s not that I don’t get it, I guess just since Melissa died, I just don’t care about so many things. I feel like I dropped a bunch of clutter in the garbage after she passed." These people (who were all very lovely, btw) were discovering how they could understand their reactionary selves and use that skill in business situations. In my mind – the goal or task at hand isn’t to discover your box or type, it is to not be a type, and not to type others. It is to lose all those fluffy emotional reactions. To shake off anything that isn’t rooted in kindness, love and even sadness. To be able to feel those deeper pure emotions for complete and simple reasons.
This moment I am grateful to be listening outside the door of my most amazing beautiful daughter’s voice lesson, while she belts a strong and pure version of 'Part of Your World', and it brings me to full gulping tears. I am not embarrassed because that pride is purer than I can even comprehend fully.
I am grateful for everyone I have and have not met. I am grateful for the understanding that I feel I now have.
I’m grateful for my friends and family. I’m grateful that Melissa’s daughter is doing ok. I’m grateful that so many friends hold her in still such high regard and recognize her for the beauty she brought to their lives. I’m grateful to work with GRACE and Jack, and I’m grateful to read so many heart wrenching stories that touch us right to the core. I’m grateful to see the unselfish love in every caregivers eyes.
I have met a number of wonderful people through GRACE, and through the live forums. I stand back most of the time and I watch. At a patient forum last year we were gathering up the attendees for a group photo. I motioned to a husband of one of the women patients to join. There is a silent purposefulness but a huge emptiness. He looked at me …”This is all about her”.
I get it. But it is not. It is about all of us.
I am just simply grateful.