Friday, March 4, 2011

Super Angie... stable

Tonight, I got an email from a friend who has known me...practicably since birth I think. And thus, she also has known my family for that long. This is a friend who I have always considered to be very very wise.

Here are some parts of the email. I thank you friend for helping me. And for telling me that I'm normal and that I will do just fine.

(And I'm posting this pic of me after my adventure on Mt. Elbrus (tallest peak in Europe) with my guide Anna. I'm posting it not as a reminder that Super Angie failed at reaching the summit, but because Super Angie achieved a new personal best of 15, 400 ft....taller then any mountain in the lower continental United States and taller then any other mountain in Europe. I didn't reach the summit, but I reached this height and the views were glorious. Super Angie WILL survive...she always does and she does with a smile. Thanks!)

There hasn't been a day since I heard your mom was in the hospital that I haven't thought about her or you or her and you. Lately, I've been thinking about how to put into words some of those thoughts. And then I read your latest few blog posts. You're getting wise the way only people who grieve for a dearly loved one get wise. The process kinda stinks--the roller coaster from peace and reassurance, laughter at memories, gratitude, etc. down through the lows of regret, guilt, sorrow, and just the relentless missing her. Missing that you won't be able to show her your nails and talk with her about the birds--and hear her voice respond to you. Missing that you can't hug her and feel her body in your arms. The missing . . .

I worked as a grief counselor for a couple of years and know enough to know that I don't know much personally about anyone's grief process. But I do know that grief is a great teacher, as are most intense life experiences. And the Spirit will help you learn what you need to know as you go along. And that includes the times that you think you aren't learning anything and don't know what the heck is going on.

I could give advice--anyone can--but know from lurking on your blog and reading your journey through these last few years of life that you are one of the more emotionally-healthy people I know. Really. Because you make space for the times that you want to crawl under the covers. Or cry on the ice. Or skate your heart out. Or play with your kids. Or miss your mom. Or cry yourself to sleep. You let yourself be you, whatever that means in the moment you're in. And yes, your mom taught you how to do that. What a gift she gave you! So many gifts, really, as you know better than anyone.

Your grief journey will take time and will change as time goes on. And you'll take the journey and do it with grace and flair and beauty--in your own way, as you do everything else. Just like your mom taught you.

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