This isn’t the blog post I’d started to write for today. But a funny thing happened on my way to googling an article I’d read in the Sunday New York Times I wanted to include as a link. I found something else that stopped me in my tracks. I loved it so much I shelved the original idea (at least for now) and changed course.
I look forward to the Sunday Times all week . It is such a great read, just crammed with all sorts of interesting and informative info — beyond just the news.
For some reason, I tend not to read it in order. Even when I’m in a particular section I don’t necessarily read it in order — meaning page by page. And I don’t always read it all in one day, either. Which is how, yesterday morning, I came to find the essay that inspired this post. Well, maybe not the entire essay — more like the last sentence.
The essay in question was in the Modern Love column, in the Style section of the paper. It’s (Modern Love) a regular feature on Sundays — don’t know about the rest of the week. It’s not written by regular Times’ columnists — submissions are welcome from anyone. This past Sunday’s was written by a Toronto songwriter.
Don’t gag — I’m not going to go all True Romance on you. I’m not even going to go into detail about her essay. Suffice to say, it did involve a break-up she had a tough time getting over, it did involve a lot of introspection and kickboxing which helped her “manage the hurt, denial and rage.”
Come on, stop making those gagging sounds — and don’t forsake me just yet. I promise, I’m getting to the point.
She also contacted a therapist she’d seen in the past. That led to the realization that she’d not only hidden parts of herself from “the guy”, she’d also hidden them from herself. That led to her working on a film and a return visit to the therapist.
While it had been a year since the break-up, and she’d done lots of work — on the film and on herself, and all that physical exercise, she still couldn’t get over him, she still couldn’t stop thinking about him everyday; and she wanted to know what else she could do to let go.
Okay, for those of you who have toughed it out and are still reading, here’s the part of the essay that inspired this post:
“You’re asking the wrong question,” her therapist said. “It’s not about getting over and letting go. It’s about honouring what happened. You met a person who awoke something in you. A fire ignited. The work is to be grateful. Grateful every day that someone crossed your path and left a mark on you.”
Tell me you wouldn’t want to be remembered that way. I sure would.
And by the way, this could just as easily be about a friendship, a mentor, a colleague or anyone else with whom you’ve had more than just a passing acquaintance. And it doesn’t have to be a break-up, either.
Grief is grief and loss is loss and loved ones die and I think this is such a beautiful way to deal with endings of any kind — and honour all those who make deep and lasting impressions on us, who make an impact and leave something of themselves behind on us and our lives.