When Michele and I decided to launch this blog, I thought, well, this will be fun! I can polish my non-corporate writing skills, say some pithy things and show off my sparkling sense of humor. But I’m feeling neither pithy nor funny, so here I sit, thinking about loss.
We have reached the age when things start to happen to people you love.
While terrible things can happen at any age, there comes a time when it becomes a disturbingly regular occurrence. For me, this started around seven or eight years ago, and the tragedies that befell friends and loved ones included natural death, a fatal shooting, an accident that resulted in permanent disability, miscarriages, mental illness and cancer. This year I lost two former colleagues, one 61 and one 52. Last year it was my mom and one of my best friends, who was 46.
But loss is particularly on my mind just now because I’m coming up on the one-year anniversary of the departure of two important people from my life. It’s tougher when, like yesterday, something happens to remind me that they’ve moved beyond my reach. Driving along the interstate, I was overcome by a sadness so deep that I could feel my heart breaking all over again.
The moment passed, and I dabbed away the tears, put on my best face and continued with my day. I spent yesterday afternoon listening to “The Moth” marathon on my NPR station, which took my mind off my own sadness and made even the interminable fall pledge drive enjoyable. As much as I feel the need to let go of the past, I’m not sure I want to. Or that I can. How do you let go of pain, or of love? I haven’t yet figured that one out.