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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Only the perfect remains

Welllllllllll it's been a couple of days since my last post. Not really sure how to transition out of that one, since it's a bit difficult to go from "hey everyone my friend died" to just talking about daily life. So I think I'll talk about it a little more if that's OK.

The truth is, that while Sam and I were pretty close in college, we had definitely lost touch over the last couple of years. It was just one of those things where people are living in different countires, we have Facebook for constant life updates and at a certain point we stop feeling like we need to actually reach out to the other person in order to keep up with them. I think the last time we communicated was right after his wedding a few months ago - I wrote him a message to say congrats.

I've lost two friends suddenly in the last few years - and in both cases, we used to be very close to but had recently drifted out of touch. Twice, a million times over, I wished I'd told them how amazing they were before it was too late.

I've written previously about one of my favorite Sanskrit idioms:

"This is perfect, that is perfect. Perfect comes from perfect.
When you take the perfect from the perfect, only the perfect remains."
The idea behind this is that everything, including us, is just as it should be - everything in the world is perfect if we truly understand its purpose. This, I think, is somewhat different from the idea that everything happens for a reason - I interpret it more as, whether something is good or bad is a matter of perspective. Can you take something that appears to be bad, flip it and se how it is good?

The word uttanita is about shifting your perspective - turning something around to see it in a different light. I totally get this concept when it comes to myself or the individual. I find beauty and inspiration in the concept that the dark, ugly murky parts of ourselves are just as lovely as the more visibly positive ones. Every lotus flower grows out of mud, darkness and decomposition. I've found that my dark places can teach me a lot, if I let them - they can make me stronger, better.

But I have more difficulty applying that concept at a macro level. In this case, I can't help remembering hearing Desiree Rumbaugh speak about losing her son, and how she was able to transform her pain into something positive. It might sound harsh and heartless that she worked so hard to see how her son's death could be a good thing but really, when you think about it, we often have no control over the horrible things that happen in the world. What we do have control over is how we let them affect us. Being stuck in a state of grief doesn't help you, or the person you are grieving for. If you can transform that grief into a positive force, you can turn the darkness around. Uttanita.

I want to believe that there is a reason for everything - that the dark things that happen in the world are part of what make it perfect and beautiful. And I know that perfect doesn't mean just means that everything is aligned. That it's how it is supposed to be.

Right now though, I'm mad at the world. I can't believe that goodness is the absoloute nature of the universe when such a wonderful, loving person can die in such a senseless way. Sam was such a good soul, with so much to give - how can anyone say this is how the world was supposed to be.

Sorry for being such a downer - just needed to get that out. I also found this blog post written by a colleague of Sam's, that just further illustrates what a truly wonderful person he was.

In other news:
- Work has been crazy and I lost one of the memory cards for my camera... sometimes I think I am the world's most disorganized human. Somehow I am able to manage large projects with lots of moving parts, but when it comes to keeping track of my own shit I'm utterly hopeless.
- After work I'm going to the bank to depoist my last-ever tax return. Thanks for the money, government. It's been real.
- I scheduled an appointment on December 1 for Mini's routine lady-parts surgery. My baby is going under the knife - I am NOT excited about this but I also giggle a little at the thought of her being completely loopy from the anesthesia. Is that wrong?
- Ikea furniture = assembled. I successfuly wielded a power drill and everyone in my home is alive to tell the tale.

That is all. Regularly scheduled programming/pictures etc to return soon.


  1. Just wanted to say I am with you in this, the experience of not being done with the grief of Sam's death after one day, one blog post, one conversation, etc. I think you should write as many posts you need for as long as you want--for what's it worth, they're helping me.

    I love you and miss you, and you mean the world to me.

  2. I'm a soprano, too! It's great to hear I'm not the only singing food blogger out there. ;) By the way, you couldn't be the most disorganized human in the world.

    That position is already taken. ;)

  3. Linz - I love you and miss you too, and I'm replying to your e-mail right now re:visiting.

    Kelly - you're not the only one! You should also check out Opera Girl Cooks, she's a soprano too and her recipes are amazing. Also re: organization - one time I spent about 10 minutes looking for my glasses...while I was wearing them. Yes. Glad to meet a fellow scatterbrain soprano :)

  4. This was a great post. I agree 100%. I am definitely a glass half-full kinda gal, and I like to find meaning in even the crappiest, lowest moments of our lives. Somehow, it can be turned into positive, even though sometimes that is really difficult to remember...
    And ah that sucks that your friend was I am sad thinking about his wife :(

  5. I too :( They just got married earlier this year and I hadn't met her, but my heart is just breaking for her and his parents.


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