Recovering From a Loss

I’m trying to deal with the particularly devastating loss of my friend and neighbor, Marianne, who passed away Tuesday morning after a 29 year battle with cancer. Like sisters, we shared a great deal of each other’s lives and interests. She taught me so much about living fully, I know I will be okay, eventually, but right now I feel a bit lost.

There’s a heavy weight in the pit of my stomach not only for me, but in my sympathy for her family and special friends. Marianne was one of those rare people who was, to use the cliché, larger than life. She inspired everyone she met, with her empathy and understanding and by her accomplishments: award winning watercolorist, stained glass artist, tile artist, skilled gardener. She was humble, helpful, generous, kind and loyal. She made everyone around her happy. How does one recover from losing a friend like that?

I’m in, what people call, my senior years, so loss is not something new to me, but this one has hit me harder than all the rest. I think Marianne would understand that, but she also would want me and the other people who are having a difficult time right now, to carry on, be strong and strive to be the best we can be. She was passionate and determined like that.

For me, it’s been helpful to have some time alone to mourn and regather my priorities. But not too much time. Keeping busy is the next step. Particularly with something useful and helpful to others. I do have a volunteer job I love. Marianne taught me the importance of doing something nice for myself, as well. I love to read and I’m saving up for a Kindle. I’m probably one of the few authors who have never seen their own book on an e-reader.

I have a couple painting projects waiting. One is enhancing a mural I did several years ago of a rock wall in my sunroom, and another is a portrait of a Grecian statue for my new bathroom. I’d like to go back to stained  glass class and make some projects for my family. I just finished a jigsaw puzzle and I’m ready for a new one. And one of Marianne’s friends and I plan to continue doing some of the things we three used to do.

Writing this has helped me form my sense of direction. So Marianne, I pledge to try my best to become a little more like you — to Aspire to Inspire before I Expire. Rest in peace my precious friend.

Marianne

Marianne

13 Comments

Filed under musings, writing

13 responses to “Recovering From a Loss

  1. Oh, Coco, I am so very sorry. Marianne sounds like a remarkable woman. As painful as it is, it’s good to grieve someone who touched your life profoundly. And you already inspire – in fact, you started me on the road to a remarkable change in my life. For that I will always be grateful.

  2. I too lost a dear friend, and I can tell you that as long as you remember her she will never be gone. Live for her. Write for her, ever write about her. I have found writing very good theropy.

    • You are absolutely right, Ms. B. Lamping. Writing about our experiences is like having a confidant with which to share all things. You and I have learned a valuable life lesson. I am so sorry for your loss and hope that time and writing will ease your pain.

      Thank you for your comment. It means a lot!

  3. Coco, I’m so sorry. I can’t even imagine all she’s gone through battling with such courage. I know you will miss her from your life, but I am grateful that she is now free from the body that held her captive.

    • Dellani, you are so right. Marianne is happy and healthy now, and one day I will see her again. Until then, she serves as an example for traversing this life. Thank you for your comment.

  4. I’m so sorry, Coco. How well you honor her by the form of your grief and determination for the future. And how lucky you are to have had her as part of your life.

    • Yes, Carole. I consider myself truly blessed to have had Marianne in my life, and also challenged to do the best I can to live up to her example. Thank you for your comments. I love the way you worded them. I’m even more determined now.

  5. My heart goes out to you, she was a tough fighter, all those years have finally brought her peace.

    • Thank you, greeneagle. Yes, she is at peace now and her fighting spirit lives on in all the people she met in this life. Thank you for your sympathy. I appreciate it so much.

  6. I’m so sorry for your loss of such a good friend, Coco. I imagine her reading your words and knowing how you miss her. Thank you for sharing her with us and your comment on private grieving and then keeping busy is wisdom indeed. ~~~ Tess

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