Thursday, August 2, 2012

What Would Myrna Do?

Myrna Loy during World War II
This will be the fourth post in honor of lovely Myrna Loy's birthday that I've made here, if you can believe it.  I post in her honor every August 2 because she is one of my very favorite actresses, but also because she and I share some things, and I like having some fleeting association with her because she was a good actress, but a pretty good human being too.  Therefore I enjoy saying that we hail from the same state and are both Leos born on the same day.  Not that it means I'm like her really, but still, you take what you can get sometimes in life and run with it.

However, of course, I have to realize that if I write in her honor once a year, that means I've been toiling away at this blog for four-plus years, and I once again pause to wonder if it is time to hang it up.  Maybe just concentrate on the football blog.  I realized recently that I like writing it because it is a piece of me that is without sorrow, and it allows me to be that way as well when I write.  Football and hockey, while at times tragic in their own right, are a piece of my identity that is separate from all the things that brought me to this particular blog in the first place.  And while my mom and Kelsey both are wrapped up in my memories of football, they are largely happy memories (that time I snuck out of the emergency room to watch the Steeler-Viking game notwithstanding).  But in a way when I signed on to write the football blog, it was almost as though I was splitting myself down the middle:  the happy, completely immersed/fanatic football fan on the one site, the grieving mother on the other.  Neither are a complete picture.  So, if you give up one or the other, I'd be denying that faction of myself I guess in a way that is fundamental to me now.  And I'm not sure I'm ready to do that.  I wonder if many individuals in the "recovery" stage of grief tend to feel so dichotomous, like they are split down the middle and are trying to merge the pieces.  My guess is some, at least, do.  I've just put a point on my process because I carry on the two identities in a very public way.

The thing is:  while I'm ready to move on and be known as something more than the woman who lost her daughter to an eating disorder, there is still work to be done.  Because there are more mothers losing their daughters and sons to the disease.  There are more bright young people slamming their potential against the rocks of despair and sickness, and the world will be lessened if we cannot save them.  They are worth fighting for, even though mine is such a tiny voice in the debate.  There are people who are grieving who deserve to know a little about the things they will experience.  The conundrum therefore for me is whether to say, "Okay, I've done enough, suffered enough and cared enough, so now I'm off to have some fun."  Or if I feel, like Batman, that I haven't given everything yet. (Of course, I'm no super hero...but I do own a cape, for the record.)

I've always counseled people that they should not immerse themselves in causes too deeply or too soon.  Do what they think is right for them is my motto.  I'm not back-tracking on that.  I believe it, and for my part I am not really ready to completely be an anti-ED warrior.  I've still got some PTSD from the war I did fight with it.  Steelers-Penguins is the recommended therapy for what ails me in that regard.  And, fortunately for me, the doctor(s) are about to be in.

What would Myrna do in my place?  I actually think she would pursue a middle road.  She'd lobby and fight for what she believed in, but take some time for life's pleasures as well.  That's my plan for now.  Thank you to everyone who has taken this journey with me.  I don't "see" you when you read my words, but I know you are there.

Happy Birthday, Myrna.  You were so lovely inside and out.  I enjoy sharing the day with you.

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