Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The loss of a family member

I know this is a 'natural hair blog'. But this is a post about finding peace which is more important to me right now than my hair.  I hope I help someone with this post.

I lost someone that was once very close to me.  But she didn't die.  We had to say goodbye to one another.  Well, actually she said goodbye to me.  Let me tell you why.

Friday, September 19, I went home to Chicago to attend a natural hair event. I did some vending there and I worked really hard in 2.5 weeks to complete 100 bonnets to take with me for this event.

A couple of weeks before I went home, I emailed my cousin that I was coming home and that I HOPED to see her when I arrived in Chicago.

She asked me for details of the event.  She then emailed me back and told me that the event was $25 and too expensive.  I told her that she could come to support me since this would be my first time doing something like this.  She said, "We'll see."  Needless to say, she didn't make it to the event.

Now let me back up just a little bit.  

You know what they say..."If you want to make God Laugh, tell him your plans."  Now we all make plans with the best of intentions.  So I will be the first to say that I wanted to see my cousin really bad.  It simply didn't happen.  Not of ill will.  Time went by too fast.

Friday and Sunday were travel days.  Saturday was my only full day in Chicago.

While there I had a hair appointment.  I got some gorgeous highlights and a great style.
Needless to say I was in the salon for a long time on Friday (which I am not upset about).  I got some gorgeous highlights and a beautiful style.
(If you are ever in Chicago you need to visit Crystal at Crys'Styles Unique Salon in Summit, Illinois on Harlem ave)

Anyway, I could go on and on, needless to say, the loss I experienced happened upon my return to San Antonio.  First thing Monday 9/23, I logged into my work email and saw an email from my cousin (that she had sent to me on Friday 9/20) asking if I was coming to see her.  I replied that I was just getting the message and that I was sorry that I didn't make it to see her.  She was quite upset that I didn't get to see her and responded with a nasty email and told me to have a nice life.  She stated that since I have a smartphone I could have accessed any email I wanted to.

Now, for those that don't know, I work for the IRS.  The nature of my work involves people's social security numbers, financial information, and other personal information of the most serious nature.   We ARE NOT EVER allowed to conduct work business or access work emails using personal telephones. We aren't even allowed to use our work emails to contact our taxpayers because email is not considered secure.

But, I digress. (again)
During my trip I didn't see my mother (who I think is more important than a cousin) or my grandmother  (who has dementia) or several dozen other cousins, one of my best friends since childhood or any of my aunts and uncles for that matter.  I was on a business trip.  It wasn't a pleasure trip.

The funny thing about this was that she knew I was coming and didn't care enough to spend $25 to come support me at the event I was at, but she was mad that I didn't come see her.  People place these expectations on you that they themselves are not willing to meet.  I tried my hardest to explain to her that I had certain commitments that were made in advance of my coming to Chicago (attending both of my nephews' football games) that I had to keep.  That was not enough for her.

In the end, I was so hurt and I cried about it.  My husband (who lets NOTHING bother him) told me I shouldn't care if she didn't want to be in my life anymore.  (I swear I love this guy for being so simple when I need him to be)

I have spent my life letting my family get under my skin.  It hurts when you love people so much and they don't love you the same way.  Even funnier, my cousin (before I got to Chicago) told me, "Don't forget my free bonnet."  Now, I don't mind giving anything to anyone, but she emailed me several times and mentioned the FREE bonnet. (she kept putting the word 'free' in there.)  She wanted her bonnet for free and the $25 for the event was too expensive to come support me.  But I was supposed to SPEND gas money to drive where she was so that I could come see her to give her her FREE bonnet.  But she is upset with me that I didn't come see her.

Yeah, I wonder why!!!

The silver lining in all of this is that my friend Trenell flew all the way from New Orleans to come to Chicago to help me at my vending table.  My cousin who is blood tied to me couldn't support me but a friend who has know me less time spent way more than $25 to come support me. She certainly didn't have to.

The moral of this LOOONG (sorry) story is that I choose to focus on the good in my life and although I  no longer have a relationship with my cousin, God had placed people in my life who do care about me and support me and that is what I am focusing on.

If you have people in your life who don't support your goals, your dreams, simply YOU, LET THEM GO!!!!!  It may hurt for a while, but when you focus on the positive and surround yourself with positive people you WILL see change.  Don't think that because it may be family that you can't say goodbye to them.  Child, family will be the FIRST to cut you down.

I have said goodbye.  It no longer hurts.  I am free and I have peace.  I just wanted to share this with you and I hope that when it is your time to say goodbye to whomever you need to say goodbye to, that you find peace, too.

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