So last Sunday, once again I forgot to write my blog post in here. My apologies. Again. But I have a pretty good excuse this time, I think. Well, a better excuse than most of the other times when I just forget because Im scatter-brained and have widow brain and grief fog, even 12 years later. Am I still allowed to use that as an excuse? Probably not, but I’m going to anyway.
Last Sunday at this time, I was in San Diego, and Camp Widow was just wrapping up. Michele was on the stage giving her Farewell words to everyone, and she talked about the writers of WIDOWS VOICE and asked those that were in attendance to please stand. It was then that I realized (and announced out loud): “CRAP!!! Its Sunday! I didnt write the blog!” Oops!
Anyway, Im back now, and Camp was amazing, as it always is. I did my comedic presentation and it felt incredible to be making widowed people laugh again. I attended some workshops that were new, or new to me, that I really enjoyed and got a lot out of. The Key Note Address by John Polo was really moving, and left me feeling inspired by all these resilient widowed people I have met over the years who I am proud to call friends. I was even able to spend an ample amount of time after camp was over, relaxing by the pool, swimming, getting in the hot tub, and just simply taking some time to rest my heart and body. It was, after all, the weekend of July 13th, the 12 year death anniversary of Don Shepherd. Being at Camp Widow was the perfect place for me to be. On Thursday night, after flying in to San Diego, I met up with about 15 widowed friends in the hotel restaurant/bar area, we all ordered a drink, (I had Don’s favorite root beer) and we toasted to Don, to life, to love. It felt so nice to have my friends in the widowed community help me honor and recognize that day.
And then, there was the dancing. At each camp widow, at the Saturday night dinner banquet, we do a beautiful memorial / message release in honor of the person/people we have all lost to death. It is always very emotional and moving and deeply profound. And then, the DJ starts playing fast songs only, and all the widowed people get onto the dance floor and dance. (if they want to, of course. Some choose not to dance, and that is also welcome.) In his Key Note address, John talked about how beautiful it is to see this dancing happen. And last weekend, in the last hour or so of the Saturday night event, I found myself out there on the dance floor quite a bit. Im normally not one to do a lot of dancing, mostly because I dont always love the music, and I need to really love the songs if Im going to make a fool of myself with my awful white-girl dancing. On this particular night, there was one 1980s hit after another being played, and I was loving it. Cyndi Lauper, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Bon Jovi, all the stuff I love to move to. So I danced. And lots of others were dancing too, but because it was toward the end of the night, some had already left the party. So it was a circle of maybe 30 people out there, and Michele was out there, and some of the people Ive gotten to know for years now in my widowed existence, plus new people that have just begun their grief tsunami – all of us out there dancing together.
And Im older now, so it was different than years ago, because this time my knees are weak and Im out of shape and Im 51 instead of 39, and I came home with an injury from DANCING. And even though thats a bit pathetic, its also an injury that reminds me each time Im hopping around here at home in massive pain from my knee cracking, how resilient widowed people are – and how we will get through this – laughing, and dancing, and living – together.