March 12, 2012

Vacuums

There is a vacuum left when someone dies. I was thinking about this when Whitney Houston died. We really notice it with celebrities because it's all over the news and, suddenly, that famous anchor or actor or musician is no longer part of our extended lives. It's so noticeable because we are used to having them there. And of course even you and I leave a vacuum around our more sheltered lives that is just as palpable to those who love us. Celebrities have it at both levels. I miss my mommy but so does half the world.

How to we fill that gap? The news media handles the celebrities for us by overloading the airwaves with remembarances and trivia, while we process our personal vacuums with memories, funerals, wakes, celebrations of life and in the private moments behind our own veil of tears. It's the circle of life and something we all experience to various degrees.

This activity can continue for some time, commensurate with the importance of the person to us, how wound into our lives they are at the time of their death, how dependant we are upon them ... many factors. It will take as long as it does and will vary for each of us. For some, it will be a milestone event which will pass through time. For others, it will be unbearable, unmeasureable and will last seemingly forever. And there are all the in-betweens.

But life must go on for those who are still here. We have real lives to live, roles to play, things to do. We are put here to live, after all, and we can't stop living because someone we love has ended their time with us. But we can't forget either. We just have to find a way to coexist with the memories and with the might-have-beens. As hard as it is, we have to move forward. That doesn't mean moving on, because that implies a kind of brushing aside, but simply moving.

I think about this a lot because, while I am on the verge of new adventure, Dianne, my daughter, my family will all have to move forward without me and I feel so damn guilty sometimes. I know it's not my fault - it's the cancer - but I can't help it. I'm trying to do what little I can to help, such as leave-behind videos, encouraging advice, but it won't be enough to stave off the darkness when it comes. They will all have to define their new relationship with me and my memory. Thankfully, the world and the Universe provides. Life can be rich and we have the power and the ability to choose how we want to take advantage of the diversity it offers. We can choose the roles we play, including changes to who we are and how we are. Perhaps it gives us an opportunity to review our own mortality and to make changes we should have made a long time ago. I know of many people who have turned the loss of a close loved one - a spouse or a child - into a life of volunteer work, helping others through similar loss. It's not for everyone, but it shows you that you can do things that help you while helping others. Or maybe it's just a chance to slow down and enjoy life. But, then again, it might actually be necessary to become more active rather than less in order to fill the days, in order to not let the sense of loss overcome you.

Life is about change. We start off as children and live such different experiences through all the years of childhood, through adolescence and young adulthood, through our thirties and middle ages and into our "golden years" (if we're lucky) and each phase offers such a wonderful richness of experience. And death is just part of all that. Another change that will happen to us all. So we need to recognize it as just another part of life and accept it when it comes prematurely to someone we love. It's easy to say. I know it's not easy to do.

Personal Update

Side effects. That's what is occupying me these days. The steroids that I'm taking to help with pain control (which are working, thankfully) have turned my mouth raw, my skin ultra-sensitive and are interfering with my sleep. So we're trying to find some balance in all of this. I hope there is one. Nothing is simple.

8 comments:

Lori Hope said...

Thank you for another thought-provoking post. I particularly appreciate the distinction you made re: moving forward vs moving on, because of the implication of the latter of "brushing aside."

I couldn't imagine being able to live on this plane without my dad, but I did and do live on. I miss him terribly, achingly at times, AND in an inexplicable way, we are together more now than we were when he was alive. That doesn't make me miss him less, but it comforts me, again in a way that's inexplicable.

I hate that you're going through this and love that you're opening your experience to us. I spoke at the Tucson Festival of Books yesterday and talked about your blog. I hope some people avail themselves of your gift.

With love,
Lori

mao qiuyun said...

stuart weitzman boots, http://www.stuartweitzmanoutlet.us/
ray ban sunglasses, http://www.raybansunglassesonline.in.net/
black friday deals, http://www.barbourjacketsuk.co.uk/
louis vuitton handbags, http://www.louisvuittonhandbags.org.uk/
nike trainers, http://www.niketrainers.me.uk/
oakley outlet, http://www.oakleyoutlet.in.net/
lululemon outlet, http://www.lululemonoutletstore.in.net/
roshe run, http://www.rosherunshoessale.com/
soccer jerseys, http://www.soccerjerseys.us.com/
cheap mlb jerseys, http://www.cheapmlbjerseys.net/
replica handbags, http://www.replicahandbag.us.com/
north face jackets, http://www.thenorthfaces.in.net/
louis vuitton outlet, http://www.louisvuittonoutletstore.name/
hermes birkin, http://www.hermesbirkin.org/
kobe bryant shoes, http://www.kobebryantshoes.in.net/
replica watches, http://www.replicawatchesforsale.us.com/
hollister uk, http://www.hollistershirts.co.uk/
ray ban, http://www.occhiali-rayban.it/
prada handbags, http://www.pradahandbagsoutlet.co.uk/
the north face clearance, http://www.thenorthfaceclearances.us.com/
cheap nba jerseys, http://www.nbajerseys.net/
ray ban sunglasses, http://www.ray-bansunglasses.eu.com/
tory burch outlet, http://www.toryburch.in.net/
beats headphones, http://www.beats-headphones.in.net/
air max 2014, http://www.airmax2014.net/
cheap nfl jerseys, http://www.cheapnfljerseys.org/
montblanc pens, http://www.montblanc-pens.com.co/
michael kors outlet store, http://www.michaelkorsoutlet-store.us.com/
1010maoqiuyun

chenlina said...

chenlina20151128
canada goose jackets
coach outlet
abercrombie and fitch new york
ugg sale
ralph lauren uk
jordan concords
uggs outlet
jordan retro
louis vuitton handbags
giuseppe zanotti
cheap uggs
hermes birkin
michael kors handbags
louis vuitton purses
ugg boots
lebron shoes
canada goose outlet
coach factory outlet
uggs boots for women
cheap uggs
oakley outlet
louis vuitton purses
cheap oakley sunglasses
coach factory outlet
polo ralph lauren
louis vuitton bags
fitflops
uggs outlet
ugg boots for women
louis vuitton handbags
michael kors outlet online
p90x
coach factory outlet
oakley sunglasses
air force 1
coach factory outlet online
adidas originals
michael kors uk
louis vuitton outlet online
uggs on sale
as

mmjiaxin said...

Cheap Jordans For Sale
cheap retro jordans
michael kors outlet
kobe shoes for sale online
fitflops clearance
http://www.tiffanyandcooutletonline.us.com
mlb jerseys authentic
mlb jerseys authentic
tiffany and co jewellery
http://www.kobebasketballshoes.us.com
chrome hearts online
air jordan
http://www.rayban-sunglasses.uk
oakley sunglasses
cheap authentic jordans
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors handbags
cheap tiffanys
jordan retro
tiffany and co outlet
gg

xumeiqing said...

20160517 chenxin
toms shoes
instyler max
michael kors watches
coach outlet store online
kate spade outlet
cheap oakley sunglasses
cheap nba jerseys
ray ban outlet
michael kors bags
louboutin pas cher
ugg boots
designer bags
oakley sunglasses
true religion
toms outlet
oakley sunglasses
ray bans
ghd flat iron
nike cortez
adidas shoes uk
ray-ban sunglasses
jimmy choo shoes
michael kors outlet online
louis vuitton handbags
ed hardy outlet
michael kors bags
hollister sale
pandora jewelry
michael kors outlet
ralph lauren pas cher
adidas nmd
oakley sunglasses,oakley sunglass,cheap oakley sunglasses,oakley sunglasses cheap,oakley sunglasses outlet,oakley store,oakley outlet,oakley outlet store,oakley sunglasses sale,oakley sunglasses discount
louis vuitton outlet online
ralph lauren outlet
cartier love bracelet
adidas pure boost
ray ban sunglass,ray ban sunglasses,ray ban outlet,cheap ray bans,cheap ray ban sunglasses,cheap ray bans,ray bans

Gege Dai said...

rolex outlet
pandora jewelry
michael kors outlet
hermes outlet
true religion jeans
adidas outlet store
polo ralph lauren
hollister clothing
michael kors outlet online
polo ralph lauren
christian louboutin outlet
nike air huarache
toms outlet
ray ban sunglasses
burberry outlet store
pandora jewelry
police sunglasses
beats by dre
mont blanc pens
burberry outlet store
longchamp outlet
oakley sunglasses wholesale
ralph lauren pas cher
swarovski outlet
cheap nba jerseys
christian louboutin uk
michael kors handbags wholesale
michael kors outlet
longchamp outlet
michael kors uk
ray-ban sunglasses
fitflops clearance
tiffany and co
true religion jeans
lebron shoes
chanyuan0610

chenlina said...

chenlina20160614
toms wedges
ray ban sunglasses
louis vuitton
polo ralph lauren
kobe bryant shoes
louis vuitton purses
hollister clothing
mont blanc pens
rolex submariner
longchamp outlet
coach outlet
michael kors outlet clearance
nike free runs
jordan 13
coach factory outlet
oakley sunglasses
kobe 10
nike sb
hollister uk
louboutin pas cher
mont blanc fountain pens
coach outlet store online clearances
air jordans
coach outlet
michael kors handbags
tory burch handbags
michael kors outlet
supra sneakers
louis vuitton outlet
christian louboutin outlet
louis vuitton outlet
nike air max 90
giuseppe zanotti
tory burch outlet online
celine handbags
michael kors outlet
louis vuitton outlet
kate spade handbags
nike air max 90
asics shoes
as

Yuanyuan Lin said...

7.09lllllyuan"oakley sunglasses wholesale"
"louis vuitton handbags outlet"
"ray-ban sunglasses"
"michael kors wallet"
"ray ban sunglasses"
"oakley sunglasses wholesale"
"longchamp handbags"
"juicy couture tracksuit"
"prada sunglasses for women"
"swarovski outlet"
"ralph lauren polo"
"longchamp outlet online"
"links of london"
"cartier watches"
"nike roshe run"
"asics"
"ferragamo outlet"
"cheap ray ban sunglasses"
"polo ralph lauren"
"michael kors outlet"
"nike tn pas cher"
"ray ban sunglasses"
"tiffany and co"
"tory burch outlet online"
"michael kors outlet"
"mulberry outlet"
"tiffany jewellery"
"tory burch outlet"
"babyliss pro"
"police sunglasses for men"
"prada outlet online"
"soccer jerseys"
"michael kors clearance"
"mcm outlet"
"true religion jeans outlet"
7.09