At the end of the year, I suffered a lot of loss.
This past week, I was back in the States and I realized that while none of it is passed, the healing process has certainly begun.
In October, I lost my great-nephew Shane. Although I did not get to see his mother or his sister, I did visit with his grandparents (my brother and his wife). The grief has certainly gone. But they are pushing to move on through life. I visited Shane’s grave while I was there, straightening the flowers on a windy blustery day.
I also spent a little time with my brother-in-law and one of the children of my sister Eileen, who passed in December. Of course, I spent a lot of time with our mother as well. They are struggling, but they are also doing their best to get through each day. They haven’t given up and that is a very positive attitude in my opinion.
Our immediate family and a few friends gathered for a special memorial mass for Eileen. There was something special about standing together with most of my siblings, holding hands through the “Our Father,” that really brought up the raw emotions of our loss, but also brought us all together in the realization that we did not each stand there suffering alone.
January 1st was the fire that stole my brother’s home. I drove by the site on my first days, saddened by it all . . . how I had not been there . . . how devastated they must have felt. I saw him and all of his family. They are all well and making things work. Before I left town, construction had begun on the new home.
Oddly, a fire attacked the home of another brother while I was there. It was not as big a fire, but still very upsetting. Four days later, while he was still displaced living in a hotel, I joined him and his family for a lovely birthday dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. They were not letting the fire get them down, so why should I?
This morning, back in Ankara, I awoke for coffee on the balcony and then checked my calendar hanging on the wall, as I always do. (Yeah, I am old-fashioned like that. I still prefer my hand-written calendar). I realized today would have been my one year anniversary at the “new” job.”
In just a few seconds, many emotions ran through my body. Disbelief. Anger. Sadness. Fear. And then it changed. Seeing how all of my family is pushing through such tragedy, I guess it is time for me to get over it. It’s been almost four months. Last week, I told a friend the story. He looked at me very seriously and said, “You should have pulled a George Costanza.” Just go back to the job, sit at my desk, and pretend nothing ever happened.
Nah. Moving on . . .