Notice the Collateral Beauty

Around the world billions of people set up Domino’s just to watch them fall never really appreciating the profound magic they are witnessing. If ever there was any symbol that best described that which is the art of life and death I don’t know anyone who’d ever be able to name it.

A few weeks ago I noticed some of my own collateral beauty. I have a very interesting memory – I don’t always remember exact dates or times, but I remember events. Good ones and bad ones.

Yesterday I was thinking about my younger brother Christopher who is without a doubt, my hero. He doesn’t know that however. I often wonder if he remembers the day that we were fighting – I was about ten or twelve I think, we were living in Calgary right across the street from the CFB Calgary and my mom was really frustrated with us. We were fighting because he’d recorded over my mixtape that I had to make by putting my stereo up next to my TV while watching Much Music.

Finally my mom poked her head out of her bedroom and yelled for us to knock it the hell off. My brother looked at me, and then he looked at her – we were so shocked because my mom didn’t ever yell at is. Finally he broke the silence by saying “Not until the Fat lady sings. I will fight to my death because I am right and she is wrong. (He was totally in the wrong.) The words were no sooner out of his mouth before a commercial for Rita McNeal came on the television screen.

My brother and I started cackling until we were unable to breath and I’m pretty sure my mom rolled her eyes and called us idiots. It’s one of the last good memories I have of my brother. I don’t know if he knows that I lost a child. I’ve certainly never had the guts to tell him. I know he’s dealt with loss in his own ways – I know that he has certainly lost a lot of the young boy I grew up with. The man that my brother became is strong and smart, independent and beautiful. He’s kind and unfailingly funny when he wants to be…when he’s around me he’s stoic.

Over the years that I’ve suffered and been abused and broken I somehow shattered my relationship with my brother. I lost my brother because I was so angry at the world, so distraught at all that I’d been through that I hadn’t ever stopped to consider what he might be going through.

A few nights ago I was meditating and I was thinking about my son…I had a…dream? A vision maybe? whatever you want to call it, Connor spoke to me. He called me Mama and said he loved me. He asked me not to cry for him any more, but instead to embrace love and life and go live so that when I visit him I’ll have stories to share. He told me that he’d have been a hockey player – I cried because I’m a Football fan…but also because I think should my son have become a hockey player I’d have enjoyed watching him.

For the first time in more than twenty years I do not want to die. I want to live and inspire people, share my thoughts feelings and lessons with the world and maybe help someone who has been through what I’ve been through.

Instead of mourning what I do not have I am going to celebrate what I do have. I am one seriously lucky blessed girl. I have ten thousand friends around the globe cheering me on. I’ve spent ten years being miserable and angry at Death and Time and Love.

I’ve spent a great job fucking everything up by staying in my depression, by filling my house with shit I no longer need in order to set myself up to be too embarrassed to let anyone in. I realized yesterday I’ve been surrounding myself with shit I didn’t need because I was choosing to stay in the past so I could hide from the future.

The problem with that mentality however is that life and death, love and time are inevitable – you can’t stop them from coming at you. You can’t stop life because it will continue on with or without you. Love lives inside of us – it’s not something you hold in your hands and it sure as fuck doesn’t come into a box. It is not a feeling or a thing it’s a part of what makes us who we are as human beings. It’s a part of our soul whereas Death is…I realize now more than ever, just another adventure.

I’ve decided to write a book about my life. I always knew I was going to it’s just that now I’ve decided to actually begin writing it. I’ve finally decided to put words together to create a book that will be about me and what I’ve learned. I hope to publish it but I’m beginning to realize that the creation of the book is what matters – not whether or not it sells or how much money it makes but the art of creation.

God is defined as an entity that created the world and everything in it…if that’s true in any tiny part then anyone who creates something is in a sense a God. A creator and implementor of tiny little worlds.

I’d love to say that I’m not sad he’s gone but that would be a lie. I will always miss what could have been…but now at long last I am finally ready to accept what will be. I’m not afraid of the future any more because if I can survive after everything I’ve been through, after nearly dying a million times over then there is nothing that may happen in the future I cannot get through. And hopefully when I finally do have children…my brother will be there to show them how amazing a person he is.

Here’s to the future,


2 thoughts on “Notice the Collateral Beauty

Comments are closed.