My mom and I are taking a short trip this week back to our home town and to a family reunion. It has been on her bucket list for years and it has instantly brought back the joy and laughter in my soul. It feels like I am once again a young teenager with her promising life shimmering in the distance.
It was like one part of me was back in high school today, happy and laughing with my best high school friends. It didn’t matter that the 44 years had taken away part of someone’s hair or that we had gained a bit of weight or had quite a few wrinkles between the four of us. We were still the same happy-go-lucky friends that we had once been in high school and I experienced a renewal in my heart, body and soul.
I had to return back home to discover that I am still the same happy person inside, that I had survived the many tribulations in life that almost brought me to my knees. The news that my youngest baby would never develop beyond a 2-month developmental level when I was just a young mother was devastating and it was all true. He lived to be 29 but never experienced the beauty of life around him.
I survived almost being raped by the Dean of my university shortly after the birth of my first son and never told a soul until recently. I suffered through a divorce when my boys were 2 and 4 years and then moved far away from my home, friends and family to find a school to help my baby. 33 years later I am now facing another divorce and it will be the last one in my life.
There were many more challenges and painful losses in the past 40 years but there were also so many victories along the way, filled with opportunities to learn about the world and life. But I lost my laughter along my journey and assumed it was because I had “matured.” It wasn’t maturity that caused it. It was living with someone who didn’t believe in me, didn’t see the same bright future I dreamed of and certainly didn’t share my “joie de vie.”
My forever friends showed me that I still love to laugh, that I still love life, and that I still thirst for knowledge and adventure. I still want to talk all day with people who accept me for who I am and who love me with all their heart.
Thank you my friends for a wonderful day, dinner at my favorite place and for reminding me that that same joyous girl is still alive no matter what stumbling blocks there are in life. The next time I need a good belly laugh, I’ll pack up my toothbrush and head your way.
sand all of the time