I spent an emotional weekend in Chicago. The days leading up to it were busy and I was always running. I don't think I had time to really think about what was going on. In fact I think I spent the time leading up to is purposely busy and filled so that I wouldn't have to think about it.
Friday morning I was up and out the door by 4:30am. Halfway down 494 to the airport I started crying. The enormity of what was going to happen caught up with me. Only I stuffed it down. I made myself think happy thoughts and continued my drive.
When I got to Chicago, things were so spur of the moment that I was caught up in a whirlwind of following along and going with the group of 10 other women. We did some touristy things like Navy Pier, walking in downtown Chicago and eating at Harry Carey's. And still I did not let those emotions overtake me.
Friday night there were stories about Traci, the friend we lost. There were stories about us and our seven years at Internet friends. There were stories of how we saved each other, supported each other, loved each other and told each other the hard truths. And I laughed and smiled and listened, but did not really feel.
Saturday night we had our memorial to Traci. We each placed something in the time capsule. We each sprinkled in some of her remains and planted a tree in her name. And there were tears. Lots of tears. I shed a few, but not proportionally enough in relation to the situation.
I am struck by how powerful a group of women are. Some of whom have never met in person. Others who see each other regularly. I'm awed by how much a part of my life they are and yet this is the first time that I've hugged them. I'm amazed at how 11 women can come together and exist and be with each other when the relationship started online, continued on line and has existed for seven years.
And yet, I am saddened. I feel as though I was so caught up in the whirlwind of it that I was never fully present in the moment. I am saddened that for some reason I felt like I couldn't sit in my emotions. I am upset that I didn't fully participate to the best of my ability. And I am dumbfounded that I cannot figure out why I was like this. Why did I not remember to fully live within the moment? It's what is so very important to me in everything, why did I not do it?
And the bigger question - Why am I not living my life in the moment and giving myself the okay to feel the emotions in the situation and however they manifest on the outside and BE OKAY WITH IT? I feel as though I need to figure this out to move forward with everything in life. My relationships, my weight loss, my love, my family, my work...
This is my new challenge to myself.