It is decidedly not the end.
I am standing firmly in square one. Last week I was sliding out of square negative three, so I am gaining ground. I've got my stilettos on to give me some traction. I am digging my heels in. The view around here is definitely not the view that I was anticipating or planning for, but this is my new reality.
I just... can't even... I wish... Sigh.
However, I have learned a few things over the past ten weeks.
I learned that I am capable of crying in the absolutely most embarrassing places ever. Ever. I don't cry. Well, that's a lie. I cry whenever I see that Folgers commercial that comes on at Christmas. And I cry when I watch Up. And whenever I'm reading a book and they sneak in a storyline about Alzheimer's Disease. But beyond that, I swear, I am usually pretty solid. Now, however, I am pretty certain that there is a YouTube video that contains security footage of me bursting into tears all over town. SunTrust Bank. Kroger. Starbucks (twice). My favorite Mexican Restaurant. IHOP. The Lawyer's office. Standing out in front of the Elementary School while trying to volunteer at the Book Fair. That's the short list.
I should probably move. It would free up a whole new venue in which I can show off how well my mascara drips down my face.
More importantly than that, I have learned that I have family that extends way beyond the confines of those people that have to love me because they are, in fact, related to me. And I truly didn't even realize it until now.
I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support that has completely surrounded me over the past ten weeks. I am thankful. And grateful. And humbled. And I don't humble easily, people. You know this. You've met me.
I despise admitting that I need help. Yet, I needed help. And I didn't even have to ask. Help appeared. It appeared in the most unexpected ways and in my most desperate moments. There were the most perfect words spoken for the exact moment that I needed to hear them the most. There were words of encouragement, words to induce courage and words to soothe. There were hugs. There were shoulders to cry on. There were Starbucks Venti Nonfat Chai Lattes that magically appeared. Nothing is better in a crisis than a well placed latte. Well, that and a well placed, "Estee. You can do this."
I will never be able to repay the infinite number of kindnesses that were shown to me. I will probably bake you guys a bunch of cookies. Cookies equal love, yes? Please, please know that, heaven forbid, should your world ever suddenly tilt in a direction that you were not expecting, I will be here. I will even buy you some waterproof mascara.