When I started this blog, my goal was fun and upbeat, but this past weekend of seclusion, due to the now complete radioiodine treatment, forced me to think more pensively. This is life and what makes us real. I’m done hiding behind a pretend “everything is fine”. Sometimes, things just hurt. And well, these last few months have indeed hurt. A lot.
On my FB and Twitter pages last week, I wrote “Fierce loyalty is a rare, rare gift.” Several people “liked” but one friend privately disagreed. He said no, fierce loyalty is simply, “Faith”. He may be right, Faith is likely one of the fiercest of loyalties, but not everyone experiences in such a deep, thoughtful way, nor do they look at a higher power from his perspective.
When my former mother-in-law passed away after 25+ years living with Multiple Sclerosis, I felt something-perhaps Faith- sitting in Blessed Sacrament’s beautiful chapel. I was sitting alone and just felt something. In retrospect, it was likely “faith” or some awareness, yet unknown to me of fierce loyalty. Mollyanna’s grandma had been in nursing home for 10+ years, never known her granddaughter except with a teardrop or eye movement -but not in the sense to hold her or cuddle as a grandma should. But the loyalty wasn’t about her, it was about family. Molly’s great grandma, Nell, her grandpa Jim, her uncle ,Tim and her dad were at a Lebanon nursing home 25 minutes from their home EVERY day for those 10+ years so she would NEVER eat a lunch or dinner alone. And she couldn’t speak back, likely didn’t have much in the way of cable and never shared a meal. That’s real love, that’s fierce loyalty.
Loving your child with your whole heart and knowing that you would do anything in the world to protect them. That’s love, that’s fierce loyalty. I would give my life for my girl, never move away from her for a job, and I would work any job possible to keep her healthy and thriving. I am the parent and will do what I think is best. Will she likely need a psychotherapist some day to work through all this madness I have swirled about us? Yes, but you know what, I will pay for that too- as it was me – not her- that caused the swirl. She is the best gift I was ever given, and I tell her every day.
I firmly believe if my Grandma Sterling had passed before my grandfather, he wouldn’t have lived for very long without her. He couldn’t tell you what he had for breakfast, but he could tell you about the one room school-house where they met. That’s real love, that’s fierce loyalty.
A friend and minister recently shared some private stories about experiences that happened while in seminary that made her question God and why difficult things happen to us when we ask only for love and try our darndest to do our best for a higher power. After much discernment, she stayed true to the ministry and is today one of my favorite ministers of all I’ve seen preach. That’s real love, that’s fierce loyalty.
My best girlfriend from the second grade will take me tomorrow to hear the results on the total body scan knowing full well it may be wonderful or devastating. She is a single, professional mama working two jobs and going to school and still put me ahead of everything because she knew I needed her. That’s real love, that’s fierce loyalty.
We all make our own beds in the morning (or not), and we all wake having the day to make our own. What we do with it is ours.
Loyalty is our choice to give…or not.
I am not in a good place right now. I am sad and very, very scared. And I fully admit to needing help. But I continue to breathe, pray, love my little girl and wish for fierce loyalty from the people who cross our paths.