I stepped on the scale and wasn’t the least bit pleased with the number. “Are you kidding me?!” I said aloud. Granted I knew that while I made some pretty solid strides in the direction of weight loss it was only a week. I stepped off the scale and before I could sulk and undo the healthy work I’d done for the week by ordering an extra cheese medium pizza and wings for me, myself, and I- I reminded myself that at least I hadn’t gained any weight. While the candy free, back to the gym regularly, and increase of water intake hadn’t resulted in a single pound lost, it didn’t result in a single pound gained. Perspective, I told myself, it’s all about perspective.
My grandmother died last Wednesday night. She had a swift tooth and nail fight with long cancer. Days before she was home, eating the same glorious Thanksgiving meal the rest of my family ate in her and my grandfather’s home. She smiled and laughed when I gifted her the ruby red sequin slippers I picked up for her while Christmas shopping the weekend before. “Be warm and fabulous I told her. I don’t promise that they will work like Dorothy’s but at least you’ll be cute.” We laughed.
As I left her bedroom my heart was heavy because I knew that she was in such incredible pain. I knew that the smile and shirt fragile laughter was work for her barely 100 pound body. So when my father called me pushing 11:30pm Wednesday night I knew before I answered that she had died. His weary voice only confirmed what I knew.
We hung up and as I sunk into the couch my first thought was “Finally.” I was relieved. I was relieved that she was no longer suffering, that there would be no more painful smiles, laughs, or tries at conversation. I was relieved that the helplessness my father, aunts, and grandfather would no longer taunt them like bullies on the schoolyard of life. I was relieved that her fight was over and she could rest. Perspective.
Her absence will be missed, make no mistake about it. Christmas won’t be the same. Visiting my grandparent’s home won’t be the same. There will be no birthday call from her next year and no one to tell me how foxy I looked for my birthday, new head shots and photos for the blog, or any celebratory gatherings. When I move again back west or overseas, she won’t promise to answer the phone if I call needing anything or to come beat up whoever is messing with her pumpkin. Her awful jokes, reminders of her love, sporadic texting will all be missed deeply. She will be missed deeply. Yet I could not be more at peace knowing she is at peace. My pain for her peace, and with time I know will really be her peace for my peace. Perspective.
My dad called while I was writing this. I left him a voicemail telling him I was checking on him. He started to tell me about his “suit adventure”. My sister told me yesterday he spent 5 hours in one store looking for a suit for my grandmother’s funeral. “I left pleased having met my goal Ahyana, but I wasn’t a fan of the process.” He could have given up his hunt, could have focused on the time it took to find what he wanted, but what he was truly most pleased about was finding not one, not two, but three suits- his goal. Perspective.
This month the blog will be sprinkled with reminders of the importance of perspective. Life is more about perception than we often are willing to admit. I’m not willing to say that perception is everything, but it sure is something. There is something to be said for being intentional about what we see as real as well as ideal. There is something to be said for being thoughtful about the way we process our experiences, about the way we can express disappointment (I was so hoping I would have lost at least 1 pound) and be resolved to find hope, the bright side, the opportunity, the other ending or new beginning, motivation to stay the course or chart a new one. I have always believed that as we think so are we and that includes perception. As we perceive things so we accept them to be. I look forward to spending the next couple of weeks talking about perspective, its power, and empowering you to adjust yours as necessary. Here’s to a week that I perceive to be nothing short of one worth LIVE-ing well. xxoo