Friday, November 11, 2005


I began an email, when I was on my Pink Refrigerator/Desperate Housewife Escapes journey that began: I’m drunk. It was the day I visited my parents’ graves. I begin today’s post the same way. I do not do this lightly. I do not ordinarily have enough alcohol to be considered drunk and rest assured that I am safely in my home and do not intend to go anywhere, much less drive!

But I am home. Just come home from New Jersey where I said good-bye to the person I once was and a place that was home for over 20 years. I said good-bye to hopes and dreams that were born and died there.

I am so blessed in the ways my life is turning out now. I know that even the mistakes I’ve made in my life have led to where I am now and I am grateful for that. People I’ve known have enriched my life immeasurably.

But part of my life is over. The next phase promises joy and success and even more self-confidence. Funny to think it should be coming at my age. But that’s how it looks. I don’t mean to sound as if I am unhappy!

I suppose I’m writing about this because I think it’s important to understand we don’t need to always avoid painful emotions. I will grieve what is lost or changed in my life that I wish hadn’t and then I will be able to move on. If I tried to suppress or pretend there wasn’t any grief—over mistakes I’ve made or things I’m leaving behind—it would take far too much of my energy to try not to feel what I feel.

There is power in knowing we can survive this kind of change. The death of one part of our life opens up the possibility of rebirth into something even better. If we know we can survive the painful feelings, if we are comfortable embracing those emotions and then letting go, then we are for more likely to embrace and welcome the new possibilities that occur knowing it’s okay even if it means letting go of something else.

So...tonight I drank champagne to celebrate the good coming into my life and to acknowledge the pain of what I am letting go. I am toasting the courage it has taken to make these changes in my life. I am toasting all the other women who find the courage to let go of what is a familiar but painful situation to embrace the unknown and the possibility of happiness. I know it is not just women who face this kind of choice but I think that women often have a harder time believing they matter enough to reach for that possibility of happiness.

And so tonight I drink champagne and toast—to life!