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Inspired & Inspiring

I have never known this level of grief before and it has been hard to cope with. The best I can describe it is as a strong gust of wind that comes out of nowhere, then passes just as fastly. Lately, I have been stuck on the idea that I will never get to have another conversation with Suz for the rest of my life. Even writing that breaks me heart.

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A couple of my friends have also experienced some loss in their lives in the past weeks and we have been supporting each other as best as we can. My friend Kaya sent me this the other day, and I wanted to share it here. It is taken from from Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking

“Grief turns out to be a place none of us know until we reach it. We anticipate (we know) that someone close to us could die, but we do not look beyond the few days or weeks that immediately follow such an imagined death. We misconstrue the nature of even those few days or weeks. We might expect if the death is sudden to feel shock. We do not expect the shock to be obliterative, dislocating to both body and mind. We might expect that we will be prostrate, inconsolable, crazy with loss. We do not expect to be literally crazy, cool customers who believe that their husband is about to return and need his shoes. In the version of grief we imagine, the model will be “healing.” A certain forward movement will prevail. The worst days will be the earliest days. We imagine that the moment to most severely test us will be the funeral, after which this hypothetical healing will take place. When we anticipate the funeral we wonder about failing to “get through it,” rise to the occasion, exhibit the “strength” that invariably gets mentioned as the correct response to death. We anticipate needing to steel ourselves the for the moment: will I be able to greet people, will I be able to leave the scene, will I be able even to get dressed that day? We have no way of knowing that this will not be the issue. We have no way of knowing that the funeral itself will be anodyne, a kind of narcotic regression in which we are wrapped in the care of others and the gravity and meaning of the occasion. Nor can we know ahead of the fact (and here lies the heart of the difference between grief as we imagine it and grief as it is) the unending absence that follows, the void, the very opposite of meaning, the relentless succession of moments during which we will confront the experience of meaninglessness itself.”

And on the flip side, here is a video by Mastin Kipp about healing from profound loss.

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The past few weeks have been full of various forms of transition for me, so much so that life is feeling a little like it is happening somewhere outside the normal measure of time.  Things are moving very fast, and very slow.  Farrell once said to me, “No worry, no hurry.”  It’s a silly and simple little phrase that has popped into my head so many times since I first heard it.  It is a much faster way to say this, which re-finds me every time I need it.  

*Above image: Helmut Newton for Vogue Paris, June/July 1973

This past weekend I had the opportunity to try Aqua Flight. For those of you who don’t know what this is, I will do my best my explain it. Aqua Flight, or fly boarding, is when you are flown up in the air by water pressure. It is basically like a hover board with water underneath you.

Although these videos are extremely cheesy, they show you all you can do with this new technology. It was one of the most fun things I have ever done!

Check it:

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There is an Aqua Flight school in San Diego that I hope to check out soon as well.

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The night that Suz passed away I had an overwhelming feeling that I needed to write down all of the things that she taught me. I thought I would share this here so that I will always know where to find it. The list keeps growing everyday.

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Suz’s Lessons

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How to show someone how much you love them with a couple squeezes of your hand.

How to cook, cut and make food.

How to whistle.

What songs to sing on a road trip.

How to bake.

How to show loyalty.

How to stand up for and advocate for yourself.

How to be a good host.

The importance of setting a mood.

How and why to keep up traditions.

The importance of writing letters.

It’s the little things that count.

Always take in your surroundings. The air, the sounds, the smells and appreciate them.

Save money.

How to pick the right healthcare.

How to throw a great party.

How to make your house smell like Christmas

Count to 10 before you respond when you are angry.

How to make someone feel special, loved and important – hear them and know them.

Be thoughtful.

Send cards.

How to wrap a present with a matching bow and how to curl a ribbon with a scissor.

How to share my struggles and how to celebrate my accomplishments.

How to listen to people.

How to appreciate the beauty in all things.

How to make a bed.

How to fold my clothes.

How to perfectly plan and time a Thanksgiving dinner.

AND…

Trust in Yourself. Do What’s Right.

IMG_3246I got back to New York on Sunday night and have been slowly reacquainting myself with life here, reluctantly easing my way back in for fear of moving away from all the sadness and beauty of the past week.  Last night I sat down at my computer, unsure of what to post I mindlessly began tumbling through this site until I saw a link that simply said Listen.  I clicked, this played:

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This past weekend we said goodbye to one of the most important people in our lives. Suz lived with us for many years while we were growing up and basically played the role of a third parent in our family. Suz was an ever-present source of love and support to each of us; we loved her more than I could ever begin to convey in words. She will be forever remembered, forever missed and forever a part of us.

Suz’s Life Lessons

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