"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world, indeed, it is the only thing that ever has!" -- Margaret Meade
This quote lives beneath my shooting star, inside the cover of my little red journal. My little red journal that I’ve devoted to her.
The quote (whether truly Margaret’s or not) emerged during a tumultuous time within tumultuous times. Maybe I’ll tell you specifics. Maybe I won’t.
What you need to know is that inspiration was the take-home message that would help carry me through.
Inspiration to change the world whose shears would cut short the life of my shooting star, after shredding it almost beyond recognition in the first place, leaving behind tatters to obscure the bludgeoning over which it lay.
I needed inspiration to pull through the bludgeoning landing not only on her, but the whole wide world, it seemed. I was spinning out. Losing my grip on a world crumbling beneath my feet. Being constantly knocked this way and that. Get knocked down. Get back up. Get knocked down. Get back up.
7 times. Get back up 8. Resilience.
So black and blue. This is resilience? This feels like a slow and painful death.
I needed depth of inspiration. Lest I fall prey to helplessness. I don’t do helpless!!! So next I placed a fortune that read, "Anything you do, do it well. The last thing you want is to be sorry for what you didn't do."
Well, reunification had always been my goal, knocks be damned, no matter how long it took. And now the time it would take…was more daunting than ever. Not knowing how to stay down, I turned to the task whose timeline had fallen apart.
After years of patience and restraint, it was time to act. You see, I hadn't spoken with my sister in many years until just one month before her cancer diagnosis. I had kept tabs on her through her online activity and random updates from those who would cross her path…often confused by her actions…seeking to understand…blessings to balance against willful ignorance…keep reading…
A flood of both relief and anxiety rushed through me when she agreed to speak with me. There had been so much anger. So much fear. So many demands to simply not speak about any of it, lest it be made worse.
Both of us had been doing our best, in parallel, to manage our respective paths through worlds filled with people who don't understand. People who don't even WANT to understand. People who hurt us both on purpose and by way of IGNORANCE. Willful ignorance being the most toxic. Because it pretends it simply doesn't know better, even after education has been offered. On repeat.
I breath through the anger and frustration and the gravitational pull of hopelessness joining helplessness who don’t know the fire that burns within me.
"Do not follow where the path may lead. Go where there is no path...and leave a trail." Another fortune added inside her little red journal to overcome the call of helplessness. And hopelessness. And anger turned into fiery rage. Inspiration to find a better way.
The path before me...I know where it leads. In my family, anger driving hostility driving aggression and closed doors to safely protect. I needed another way.
And so I began.
To find my own way.
By speaking my truth.
My black and blue truth.
Sharing my voice.
My bruised and broken voice.
With all the compassion I could manage.
For you and for me and for all who have been a part of my story.
I haven't done it alone. I've had the support of a small group of committed friends and chosen family members. And therapists (plural). All critical to the retention of my own sanity, as I sought reunification. With my shooting star.