The scene is a party I hosted for my brother who’d accepted a physician position at George Washington University Hospital. He and his family would be leaving Sudbury, Massachusetts.
We in the family all chipped in to give him this party. Only problem? My fiancée (with whom I’d bought this house seen in background) had just died. Boxes of packed items sat all about, in the home. We hadn’t even unpacked everything yet, when he’d suffered a heart attack. He lived only two days.
The irony was: The first party in this new home was supposed to be our wedding reception.
Now, I had to pick up the considerable pieces….
I didn’t feel I could cancel my brother’s party. People were coming from out of town and there’d be no time for our family to get another venue.
Instead, I threw myself into getting the yard and the house ready and baking 5 calzones (they ALL went, even before the caterer’s offerings, a caterer my older brother, sister, mother and I hired.)
That’s me in the swimming pool, wearing a turquoise bathing suit and a smile (disallowing most from knowing my true state.) This picture—and what it portrays–is testament to the reality that one can’t know what’s going on, in another, by outer appearance, for this was the year that almost broke me.
I’d already gone through terrible crises—a divorce from first husband, raising my first child alone, a second difficult marriage, culminating in a two-year terminal illness with that husband.
This became my 3rd. crisis.
My world (and that of my children) reverberated with terrible challenges.
But if you see this “happy pic” you’d never know it…….
From “In the Shadow of Princes” by Colleen Kelly Mellor
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