Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Great Expectations

Someone once told me I live a delusional life on Facebook. I mean, don't we all? If Facebook is my delusion, then this blog is my reality and in some ways, my therapy. I rarely share my feelings in real life so I thank you for letting me dump my pain in verbiage. And still coming back with no judgement. Or maybe some judge. Some use it as ammunition. Some thank me. Some get to know me on levels that they never could in real life. Some never will know me and some will forever be there.

We all post about the joys about our lives, but what about the nuances of our despair? The truths and the sorrows?

My job keeps me just busy enough to mostly forget about my hurt and pain but every once in a while it seeps in and the tears pour out unexpectedly. Today was one of those days. And the tears wouldn't stop.

We attended a funeral for a fine and wonderful lady by the name of Florence. Lovingly referred to as Flo, she welcomed my mom and I into her home and arms for 20 years. She was the grandmotherly grandma who baked pies, and always had a kind word for me. She was the mom of my (former) stepdad. For 20 years, we all co-existed like blended families do; as forced families trying to make sense of each other, and it wasn't easy. My teenage years were confusing as I didn't know myself, let alone this person who was in a father figure role. To be frank, it's probably fair to say that we couldn't stand each other. And then one day, things fall apart and you aren't family anymore. It's weird.

And yet today, we all wept as if we were family. We laughed at our past issues. We hugged and shared feelings that were never shared. My stepdad said words that I had never heard from him: I am so proud of you. I expected him to say this for years and he never did. Then again, maybe I didn't do anything worthy of being proud of. Maybe the problem is in life, we have too high expectations of each other. I see it daily. Women are struggling with their body image. Mothers are striving to be as good as the others. Friends expect secrets to be kept. Relationships are expected to just work. And then when you take a step back, grow older and wiser and reflect, you can understand that perhaps everyone is just doing the best that they can. Perhaps they did the best they could. Perhaps we can forgive and move forward armed with the knowledge of our mistakes and the wisdom of a prophet.

Perhaps we just need the time and space away to understand that everyone is unique, that we shouldn't cast judgement and most importantly, life is too damn short.

While Flo's grandson played the guitar and choked back the lyrics to "Amazing Grace" and "You are my sunshine", I had a thought. What if we just all could accept each other for who we are, for the good and bad days, respect the bonds that we've shared, honour the times spent together and if it doesn't work, carry forward as friends, at the very least?

What if we could just stop expecting so much and take the time to accept?

What if.

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