Not you, I mean me. Y’all might be thinking Hey Cathy, where did you go? You were all fired up for more regular posting, then you disappeared. Where’d you go?
Don’t worry, friends. I’ve been here. Sadly, I lost a very dear friend and mentor in the last few weeks, and it threw me for a loop. I wrote earlier this year about losing two loved ones in the span of the month. I didn’t mention the aunt and uncle that died in that same month, withing two weeks of each other. So that was four deaths in one month. About a month after that, one of my closest friends lost her mother, whom I spent lots of time with during her last seven months in hospice care. It was hard, but it was a loss I expected. Losing Julie so suddenly and unexpectedly was absolutely unbearable. She was such an amazing human, and I was devastated to have lost another loved one to depression. If you are interested in learning about Julie and her work, you can read my post here, and read her obituary here.
Julie was the coolest, and so were her dogs!
Where’d you go?
So where did I go? I guess the best answer is I went deep into myself. I had to face some really painful things. I won’t lie. I am afraid. Living with depression every single day and losing three loved ones to suicide makes me so fearful for myself. I am not suicidal and never have been, but is that where my future lies? Will it eventually get to be too much for me? I don’t want that to be my fate, but I live with an illness with no cure. I don’t know what the future holds.
I feel raw. I feel like I can’t possibly lose anyone else I love, but I know that’s the nature of life. We live, we love, and we die. It is an inevitability that I can’t ignore. And the risk you take when you love people is that they might very well have an expiration date that comes up much sooner than you would like.
I spent a couple of weeks feeling like it was all futile. My life is going to be an endless series of death and grief. And while it’s true that death comes for us all, I can’t live that way.
So I spent some time with my therapist and talked through a lot of this. Talking helps. Being realistic helps. But it helped me come to an important realization.
I can’t stop loving just because life isn’t permanent.
I would be doing myself a disservice if I closed myself off from loving people because they will die. I will die too. And all we have is this time together on this crazy planet. So I will love those that I can love with everything in me while I can. And it will have to be enough. Because that’s all we’ve got.
I’ll be returning to regularly scheduled posts next week *fingers crossed* but in the meantime, I ask one thing. Love each other. Shower the people in your life with love. Because when time is up, there is no overtime. There’s only now.