Saturday, July 29, 2006

A Metamorphosing Shell

Since posting ‘Reality Check...’ I’ve received so many thoughtful and heartfelt emails from friends, family and former classmates. In my pseudo-cosmic way I held on to the hope that a call for peace for the gravely ill classmate would add to the volumes of prayer and kind thoughts that were sent to her from all around the world, as noted by her assistant.

Alas, Paula Carabelli will not be attending her 40th year high school reunion. This morning’s email reads,” She went peacefully, experienced no pain, and was surrounded by loved ones.”

So why did I take on this cause?

As noted in other writings, my first husband died young and unexpectedly. That loss fueled a survival-shell that grew and sheltered me for years. I was afraid if I reached outside of it that I would go into a free-fall and tailspin. So when a woman who I greatly admired was diagnosed with brain cancer several years after my husband’s death, I recoiled to the safety of my shell and stayed away. Soon the local newspaper announced her death and I, figuratively, beat myself up for not letting her know how much she had positively influenced the path I was taking.

When I had my own cancer bout I discovered another world. I save the details for my next book, We Were The California Girls. However, reaching out to the stricken is so very important, I learned.

My shell metamorphoses by the minute. Words and expression paint the change. If my Gathering Basket character, Rosemary Quintana, really did exist, she would be proud.


AllieM said...

Aunt Char,

I have a theory why you have undertaken this journey. That is because a heart like yours comes only once in a while and you are meant to bring peace and love into this world at a time when there are so many stamping, fighting, and hating this world into an oblivion of pain and intolerance. It is hearts like yours and mine that can make a difference even if only to our own families. Those deeds are more than most people do for even themselves.
Everytime I look at my beautiful daughter I pray I can make the right choices for her now and teach her how to make good choices for herself. I pray I can teach her to respect herself and her body, and give her enough security in her homelife that she will spread her wings and bring goodness to the world around her and family to come.
More than anything I hope and pray we will win this battle against cancer before it affects any part of her life. My heart and prayers are with you everyday.
All Our Love, Alicia, Hannah & Jason

Charmaine Coimbra said...

Sometimes the truth gets us in trouble. But when the truth is spoken, then one is set free. I, too, wish we would see more of that in our world.

Kiss Hannah and hug Jason for me!