All of it really hard stuff.
I am strong. Anyone who knows me will tell you this, but I had so many moments where my cape failed me, where the realization that I am just a woman doing her best, and sometimes even that isn't enough, smacked me dead in the face. These past few years required a lot of introspection, a lot of kindness, to myself and for others, and lessons, oh so many lessons!
But endings always bring new beginnings and reflection. I am starting to climb out of a place I have inhabited for a multitude of years. I enjoyed the honor and the grind of caring for my aging parents in their final years. I am copping to being emotionally exhausted, drained, and depleted more than I was chipper. And now I have the extraordinary opportunity to design the second half of my life in whatever way I choose. And yes, I know I have always had this choice, but somehow it didn't feel like anything remotely near the top of my priority list. I know now, I needed doors to close, in their own way and in their own time, so that new ones could open. I miss my parents, and I always will. I miss our family. But I lived every day of the past nine years with them, so I know too that their earthly journey left them tired and ultimately ready to join those who left before them. It is true that getting older is not for the faint of heart. Mostly, I feel peace for them and around them.
As of late, I have been focused on owning the emotions, whatever they are. (I know you elder parent caregivers out there can relate!). Let them come, acknowledge them, and then let them go. Not always the easiest thing for a cape wearer to do. Mostly what I see now, is a bright new beginning, born of new traditions, and new adventures yet to come. From out of the clouds, comes the sunlight. RIP, my amazing parents, RIP. Your earthly daughters have always been arm in arm, and we will forge ahead, as a smaller family, with no shortage of love and laughter.