On June 13th, 2010, exactly one year ago today, I lost a precious friend and family member. Jeff was my dearest friend (in fact, soon after I graduated college, we were married for several years; and if me sharing that isn't personal, I don't know what is! ;)), and the co-founder of my other business, Mountains of the Moon. Although we split as partners (in business and romance) many years ago, we remained best friends, and I considered him to be my brother. I am grateful that I was able to talk to him just a few hours before he left this world. His passing was sudden and tragic, but many of his loved ones came together in a way that was incredibly powerful. I flew out to Pennsylvania shortly after his death to help his family go through his belongings and to spend time with them, crying, hugging, and sharing memories. I also hosted his memorial at my home, and friends from all over the country came to honor his memory in the only way he would have wanted us to honor it - with a party.
After Jeff's death, I was a mess. I decided to take some time off from my workaholic lifestyle, and re-learn how to follow my bliss. I traveled for a few weeks, visited old friends, and spent some time away from the city exploring nature, roaming estate sales, making art for fun, and letting go. When I returned, I felt inspired by Jeff's life rather than overwhelmed with sadness from his death. And it was from this new inspiration that Bubby and Bean was born.
This is a blog about creative inspiration, and the biggest lesson I've ever learned is that from the greatest losses, sometimes, the greatest sources of inspiration can be found. No matter how desperate or grief stricken you may feel, underneath the cloud, there is a spark of beauty in realizing the gifts that were given to you by whoever (or whatever) it was that you lost. I think about Jeffery everyday, and how different my life may be had he never been a part of it. Nothing is permanent, and when we lose those we love the most, there can be a sense of joy in embracing just how much they touched us. I use this joy to fuel my creativity every single day. And this is why I describe this day as being bittersweet.
Thank you for letting me share this with you. And Jeff, wherever you are, I hope you are creating your art, dancing hard, and feeling the limitless sources of inspiration that you just weren't able to feel in this tiny world.
I hope your Monday is a beautiful one, and that whatever losses you've faced, you can find the inspiration behind the sadness today. As I've said before, "there's beauty in the breakdown." It's just up to us to find it.
FILED UNDER: random thoughts/life