NY State of Mind

So I’m officially a New York State resident again. It’s kind of funny. I’ve always associated myself with being from NY and it will always be home. But this is the first time in my adult life that I’m actually living in NY.  I went to college in Florida when I was still 17 and haven’t been back other than visits since. Go figure! Granted,  I live in upstate NY now,  but it still feels more home than my previous digs have.  There’s just something about being close to mountains and having seasons and just the charm that is the greatest state that I can’t explain with words alone.  It’s that feeling of truly being somewhere you love.  You don’t need to DO anything to have that vibe. It’s sheer contentment sitting on your stoop or driving to nowhere and reveling in the beauty and magnificence of where you are. The feels are just there.  It’s simple and wonderful tied up in a bow and BAM! Home. 

I went home home (yes,  Brooklyn) for Easter weekend. It was nice. I didn’t tell all that many people I was returning. It was pretty sad to go home and not have the Ice puppy there.  Empty. ūüė¶  There’s no words that can make that go away. Maybe time helps. I don’t know yet.   The other day was the anniversary of my good friend who took his life. I’ve written about him before (re: Sandman) and I guess it is a true testament to time since it was the first year that I didn’t completely lose it thinking about everything.  I still miss him. I still wish he was with us and nothing will change that he wasn’t here for long enough.   But I think I’m finally accepting things and coming to peace with it. It’s a strange feeling. Part of me thinks that’s a betrayal of him – that somehow that makes me miss him less or not care. But the other part recognizes you can’t dwell on the what ifs or should haves. What’s done is done.  There’s still an empty void that will probably never be filled.

But back from that tangent, home was otherwise nice. Had some meals at my favorite restaurants with family,  got breakfast – I would call it brunch but apparently if you meet before 10AM the absolute earliest,  you’re out of your mind and it’s definitely breakfast – with some high school friends (we’ve known each other for over a decade!!! How crazy is that?!??!!), and, of course,  an amazing dinner for Easter at my aunt and uncle’s – with more family! Om nom. So much food and goodness!  Anyway. Life is good. 

Hakuna Matata!


Mission: Complete

Have you ever felt like someone was sending you a message? ¬†Not in an evil way or anything crazy like that, just in a bizarre, fated kind of way. ¬†Fate. ¬†An interesting concept. ¬†Maybe crazy. ¬†Maybe completely sane. ¬†Who knows? ¬† Whenever I think of fate, I think of the animated Disney’s Hercules movie and the three Fates. ¬†The most vivid scene that comes to mind is when they are about to cut the cord on Hercules’s life, but then it turns gold and it cannot be cut for he is immortal. ¬†A strange scene to imagine at the idea of fate, no doubt, but what comes to mind nonetheless. ¬†And then I wonder if we are here living a life that has already been assigned to us or if we do have our own choices. ¬†Maybe we’ve already made the decisions we are going to make way back when, before we were ever born and now we’re just enacting them out. ¬†A journey that only fate could bring us to. ¬†Or is it all a hoax? ¬†There’s no such thing? ¬†I don’t know. ¬†I think I’m more prone to believe the first over the latter, but I could be wrong. ¬†Free will has to be somewhere in there which is why I think I’m more for the idea that we’ve already picked out the paths we will take and now we’re just experiencing them over “I was destined to do this because somewhere, at some time, someone arbitrarily decided this would happen to me.” ¬†But I digress.

Messages. ¬†Every now and then I get this feeling that someone is trying to tell me something. ¬†When I’m doing something I’m not supposed to, I automatically question myself: “If Mom finds out, how much trouble will I be in?” ¬†Maybe that’s just my conscience, but then there’s the other stuff. ¬†The bigger things. ¬†When I think about my friend that is no longer with us, I’ll get a text from someone else in our group asking how my day is going at that same time. ¬†Coincidence? ¬†Maybe. ¬†But I attribute “coincidences” to God (my personal belief – ¬†if you’re not religious, it’s my blog and you’re entitled to your own beliefs) at work in these moments.

Friday will mark two weeks since my grandmother’s funeral. ¬†It is hard to say goodbye to people when they go to their final resting place, and yet, it was made slightly easier for me when the priest said his homily at the funeral mass. ¬†Fr. Raj started off by talking about ¬†the readings. ¬†Standard homily. ¬†But then his message shifted to talking about my grandmother and her life. ¬†He didn’t know my grandma, but I’ve found from working in my church that priests have a homily saved for funerals. ¬†Regardless of if they knew the person, they have a list of sorts that they go through that basically covers what they think is helpful: ¬†“Our brother/sister lived a fulfilling life. ¬†He/She must move on to be with the Lord now.” ¬†As I’ve said, I’ve worked in a church for years with multiple priests. ¬†Each one of them had the same spiel for a funeral mass with an “Insert Deceased’s Name Here.” ¬†By no means am I trying to discredit a priest and/or what they say. ¬†I know their words can be extremely comforting during those times. ¬†It’s just that there’s not a lot of new stuff to be said about someone who has passed away.

When Fr. Raj started speaking, I was expecting this very thing and he started off saying exactly what I’ve heard at hundreds of funerals before. ¬†But then I was astounded. ¬†“On Earth, we have astronauts. ¬†They go to space and they have their missions. ¬†And once they complete their mission, they have to come back to Earth. ¬†Our sister’s mission took her 96 years to complete, but now she has done so and it is time for her to go back to the Lord.” ¬†OK, those may not have been the exact words, but you get the idea. ¬†The entire time Fr. Raj spoke, my family was looking around at each other amazed. ¬†Our faces must have been a sight to see at any rate. ¬†After the mass, my mom went up to Fr. Raj to ask/tell him about his homily. ¬†He told us that no one ever mentioned to him that I was studying to be an astronaut or anything along those lines. ¬†What made him make that analogy? ¬†God. ¬†My grandma. ¬†Fate. ¬†Maybe you don’t share my thoughts on that, but you have to say that it is something else. ¬†Remarkable that it hit so close to home.

“They that love beyond the world cannot be separated by it. ¬†Death cannot kill what never dies.” – Williams Penn