Death is the Key to Living
The pain felt when someone dies is a gateway to deeper spirituality and greater appreciation for the people and opportunities in our lives. It is an invitation to ask more, seek more, and live more.
I am a wife, mother, manager, foodie, baker, and philosopher who yearns for knowledge and varying view points. I ride the fence on most things ranging from politics to dinner. I love various perspectives on just about everything, but there are a few exceptions where I clearly know where I stand, and on those issues my feet are firmly planted.
I have two boys, both with special needs. I live an exhausting but fulfilling life as their mother and the wife of the most amazing man on earth. I also work full-time as a manager and marketing henchman for a reputable local real estate firm. I enjoy cooking for friends and baking decadent cakes. (Sorry, but I have no interest in boring cakes.) And although I dabble in photography and drawing, my real passion is studying music. I have little to no musical talent unless you consider the intense emotional connection I have with great music. In fact, with the exception of my children and sometimes my mother, most people don’t appreciate the lessons or “you’ve gotta hear this” moments I share with them so I’m going to post my dribble on my own damn web site, and I really don’t care if anyone reads it. So pppttthhhh! I’ll feel better having written about it for myself. [Amendment: In February 2016, I picked up the piano again after 25 years!]
I am a Midwestern middle-class white woman with an incredibly open mind, but I am privileged. And I had lived the most boring of lives. My parents had me when they were very young and have been together ever since. I was raised in a loving home where nothing life-altering ever happened – until my high school years, that is, when every year we lost a female student to one of two things: murder or car accident. Two were murdered [in separate incidents]; two were killed in [separate] car accidents. Having grown up Catholic, I was already a somewhat philosophical person, but these four years were the beginning of a change in me. We all matured in a lot of ways; I became more introspective as well as extrospective. And I developed a deeply-rooted, compulsive need to tell people what they mean to me. This new way of thinking became a new way of living.
I graduated with my bachelor’s degree in 2000 and married my best friend in 2001, the year of 9/11. Once again, rattled to my core and suffering from mild PTSD half-way across the country, my practical solution to overcoming tragedy was to continue spreading optimism. I started blogging. A consistent theme quickly emerged, even in the most ridiculous stories: There is good in even the worst of adversity if you’re willing to look for it.
My life is no longer boring. I have struggles. I have pain. But I also have joy, and some of the most intense joy has been born out of pain.