I realized today that I have lived my whole life in fear. I let opportunities and experiences slip through my fingers because I was afraid. Afraid of failing, afraid of being hurt, afraid of what might happen.
I spent yesterday and today mourning the loss of my second mother, Mavis Allan. When I moved to Waterloo, Mave became my second mom through my best friend Julie. She passed suddenly last week and the funeral was held today. Mave was only 76 years young, when I met Mave, she was roughly the same age as I am now. What I left with today, was the legacy she left behind. The ceremony was beautiful and a true celebration of Mave, worrywart and all. The eulogies didn’t try to hide her imperfections, they embraced them because that is who Mave was. She was SO loved and as I listened to the memories read aloud, I watched the friends and family gathered, nod and laugh! Will I leave behind that kind of legacy?
I reconnected with a lot of people I let slip from my life. I am fortunate that my friends Pam and Cathy didn’t let me go. After my divorce, I went into a deep vortex and couldn’t get out. They persisted and it is a tribute to them, that I am back in the fold of my first adult girlfriends. What the past couple of days has opened my eyes too, is that I can’t let those friendships go. I am blessed for having them and my life was full, so very full before I caught up in everyday living. Is it hindsight, is it death, is it realizing that life is precious and every minute should count?
That is where fear comes in….I have been so afraid my whole life, that I have lived my life in fear. I didn’t pursue relationships even though it was obvious that, that was a path I could have chosen. I didn’t accept help when I needed it or wanted it. Life will be safer when, I lose 20 lbs, when the kids move out, …. All that leads to is a life of regret.
What I learned today is life doesn’t wait, when your friends look at you from 20 years ago-they still see the same you. They don’t notice the 20 lbs, the wrinkles, the grey hairs, they remember “you.” All those things I worry about and keep me from moving forward, aren’t what people are going to remember. Today was a celebration of life, what friends Mave had, how she was a such a good mother, how she had strong convictions of what she believed was right and wrong and she loved her husband, children, family and friends with utter devotion. They didn’t talk about how she hated her stomach or she felt needed to lose weight. All those things we worry about, don’t matter in the end. What matters is that we love and live our life to the fullest.
I can’t change the past. I am blessed I have the friends I have. I am grateful that after 20 years, those people I hadn’t seen since remembered my name and remembered “our” stories. I have my life now and I have the life past. Can some of it intertwine-absolutely! What I need is to remember the Susanne that was then, take the lessons I have learned now, blend the two and throw out the fear. Ask myself consciously, if the fear is preventing me from moving forward? Will I leave a legacy like Mave’s. a full and vibrant life loved and been loved by so many. Will I leave behind a life that was fully lived, with no fear, just embracing all that came my way, a full, rich abundant life?
The best part of life is each day is a new beginning, can i embrace it fully with no reservations trusting only my heart? I say yes, I have lived from a place of fear for so long, it is time to shed that cloak and step fully into my own.