Bio Moment – Mind blown

The featured photo is of me, though I don’t know what part of me …

… or where it was taken.

I found it when I went to my phone’s photo album in search of something ethereal. Yeah, I was feeling… pulled apart… flighty… here, and also *not* here.

It was the last photo taken — earlier today. Not a clue where it came from… but it fits. Why? Well, lemme tell ya…

I have spent a good part of my life living in the before- and- afters of life.

I’ve written extensively about those moments. They are poignant, life-changing, profoundly joy-filled or heart-crushing.

That’s what I planned to write about today.

I know. Fun times. That’s the kind of few weeks it’s been.

I got to work a half hour early, which is my habit. I had just started writing when my youngest daughter sent through a photo on Messenger of her late dad, brother, and her, taken soon after I’d moved to Canada.

In it, she is squinting, my son is wearing sunglasses and her dad is wearing a cowboy hat. They’re at a rodeo in the desert, I think. They look content.

But something is missing, I immediately thought.

And as expected, the message came through loud and clear…

* I * was missing.

I looked at the photo. Noticed how much my daughter, who looks so much like me, also looks like her father.

I felt like shit.

Then I looked up at photos I have at my desk. I’ve shown them to you before…

And, the little card at the top…

And I thought …

WTF? Why do the most painful, punishing messages ALWAYS come rushing in?

I laughed a little and shook my head.

I shook something loose.

I honestly felt something inside me shift … and lift.

I looked at the faces of my family … my sweet husband who loves me more than I think I deserve, my children (who are the only ones whose opinion should matter regarding my parenting), my wonderful mom & dad (who have remained unfailingly supportive of me throughout the years), my precious grandson, and our floofy cats…

Then I went back to the photo my daughter sent.

They look happy! My daughter sent it because it made HER happy and she wanted to share!

SHE is still my daughter. My son is still my son. My ex husband died too young and though I was no longer his wife we were always connected as family. We worked very hard to maintain that bond.

All of these things are true at once. No need for before or afters.

This realization is NEW!

The entirely of my life – and yours – is simply one thread from beginning to end. All of it.

Mind blown.

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