Last night as Michael and I were talking in bed, he asked me if I felt braver because of losing Luka. It was a great question and it has me wondering and thinking about it as I eat my breakfast and watch the sun shine through the clouds. It has been a crazy journey, and I honestly feel the most peaceful and calm I have in a long time. I haven't been teary, and the memories of Luka aren't invading my mind as prevalently as they did before July. Like yoga, when you return to the breath, I am trying to turn my thoughts to the now, the present. When I get caught up in memories, or hopes for the next pregnancy, I have to remind myself, that all I have is the now. It's been a great mantra. As I thought about Michael's question, I decided to look up the definition of brave in the dictionary. Possessing or exhibiting courage or courageous endurance. Have I been courageous? There have been days where I have felt like curling up in a ball and never leaving the house, but I have also felt limitlessness potential to live an amazing life. Loss has a funny way of making you want more out of life. Yes, grief can consume you, but at some point you have to make a choice. To shut down, or to open up. I believe many people think it's easier to shut down. But, really it's not. There is something beautiful about honouring the grief, and coming out on the other side, stronger and more vulnerable at the same time. I know Michael is much braver than before Luka. He has opened up his creative spirit, and is trusting who he really is. So often in life we don't do what we really want to do because of fear of rejection and what others may think. It's wonderful to see my husband pursue his creative path. I don't doubt that losing Luka, was a huge catalyst for his new journey. I also have seen strength in me, that I didn't know existed. I barreled through a teaching year, and decided to share my passion for theatre with my students, and it paid off both professionally and personally. I used to worry if I was good enough, or if my philosophy and teaching style were acceptable. Losing Luka, has ignited my belief that creativity and the Fine Arts are the core of who I am, and that my passion lies in teaching this to my students. It's what makes me interesting. Life is too short to compromise on your own belief system. So, to answer Michael's question, I would say yes, I am braver. We both are. But more importantly, we have opened up our hearts to the possibility of life and loss. The joy, the laughter, the hopes, the dreams, the pain and the sorrow. This is the foundation of art and creativity. Without joy and sorrow, we wouldn't have Mozart, Van Gogh, Lady Gaga, or any performer, artist or actor. Earlier this summer, I asked people if we have more joy or sorrow in our lives. My favourite answer was from Darren who wrote, "Joy. Sorrow is what we remember." I do think we have more joy, and we forget it so easily because it comes so naturally. And I think we need to remember sorrow, to truly experience joy. As I move forward in my life, I am trying to live bravely in the moment, by embracing the waves of sorrow, and opening my heart to the beauty and joy of daily life.
The artist is extremely lucky who is presented with the worst possible ordeal which will not actually kill him. At that point he is in business.