When I spoke to Linda on Christmas day, that version of me could not possibly know the loss I was about to experience 6 weeks later in February, when she died of Covid 19. Of course, I know that none of us is invincible, and that experiencing loss binds all human beings together, but that doesn’t make it any easier when your dear friend dies.
Although I have lost two of my love partners, one through divorce and the other through death, nothing anyone could have said would have prepared me for this. Recovering from the loss of a close friend can be complicated and difficult in ways that are different than the death of a spouse or parent. Friends play a special role in our lives. Linda gave me many rewards; positivity, empathy, joy, a workout partner and a great conversation partner.
One month after Linda’s death, coincidentally, it is Women’s History Month, the time we are reminded of the accomplishments of women to our culture and society. Linda was a trailblazer in her own right. While raising 5 children, she graduated from Yale School of Drama and earned a Ph.D. in Political Science. She served as a policy director in the Office of Water at the Environmental Protection Agency. Linda loved music, was a talented pianist and served on the Board of Directors for the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO). She served as a Trustee to the Manhattan School of Music (MSM) AND THE Levine School of Music.
Through my studies as well as my personal experience with loss, I know that grief is not a passive experience. I can’t choose not to have major losses. However, I can choose how I will take charge of losses:
- I must accept the myriad of feelings that flood over me, even if I don’t want to.
- I must continue to invest my love and emotions in others, while recognizing they too could be taken from me.
- Loss reinforces the mutual need we have for one another.
Linda was an awesome friend.
I know we’ll see each other once again in the future, somewhere, sometime.
Please save me a spot so we can talk about politics, our children, fashion and life as we know it.
I love you and will keep your memories forever close to my heart.