Seeking My Best Self

trying to make sense of my life – and lose some weight

A World With Less

robinRobin Williams died today, apparently at his own hand. I am reminded of the worst day of my life, the day my husband did the same. I am more than reminded. I find myself thrown into deep grief, because both were men who brightened and lightened the lives of others, yet were unable to do so for themselves.

It’s been almost twelve years, but I still recall the moments and the reaction.

The reaction was universal shock. Lee was well-known and well-loved in our hometown. He made his friends – and everyone was his friend – feel valuable, safe, protected. He brought levity and love to any situation. The shock waves over his death expanded outward and outward and outward. Even years later, people express disbelief and sorrow.

I try not to dwell on the specific moments, but they are there, always hovering just below the surface, ready to rise. I neither encourage nor prevent, but let them be what they are. Often they emerge as one large surge, which crashes and quickly dissipates upon the shore. Other times, they roll and roll, and I concentrate on being a boat – bobbing but not tipping. Today, though, I am swamped by continuous waves that swell and storm around me. Today, Xanax is my friend.

Did his wife suspect that Robin was capable of such an action, or was she, like me, shocked to find him so desperate? Did she also try to dissuade him from that last, terrible deed?

Am I sobbing over her tragedy, or over mine? Or is there really any difference? A beloved man has lost his way, and the result is a world with less joy, less love, less Robin, less Lee – a world with less.


Family Matters

mikecorinnaIt’s been two months since I last posted. My brother has had a miraculous recovery from his stroke. He’s not *there* yet, still attending both PT and OT, but he’s back to work (for me!) and feeling good. He has lost 50 pounds in these two months, with a goal for another 50 by years’ end. That’s a dramatic loss, but he’s doing it in a healthy and measured way, and it’s his best defense against future stroke events.

My sister-in-law, Corinna, also jumped on the health bandwagon – and she’s also lost 50 pounds. It’s been so much fun to watch her explore new foods – discovering that cherries and other fruits are DELICIOUS. That salads can be a fun and filling dinner. In fact, I ate much better when I stayed with them – maybe I should move back!

The month I stayed with them allowed us to reconnect and deepen our relationship.  It was the silver lining in the stroke storm-cloud. Why did we allow geographic separation – and only 60 miles – to cause such emotional distance? As far as I’m concerned, this is the person  for whom the song “He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother” was written. I would walk any road for my baby brother – no matter how long. I’m sorry it took such a traumatic event to bring us back together.

I am determined not to let it happen again.


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