That’s Life

As I’ve arrived in middle age, I’ve come to the realization that I’m no longer much of a public speaker.

Maybe it’s because I’m in the spotlight so much in my professional life, I just don’t want to feel that way in my personal life. I just want to relax, be myself, “turn off” – and not have to perform.

Unfortunately, middle age also seems to be the time of a familial changing of the guard; a time when life seems to be thrusting me into a “performance role” more than ever. As “big life things” happen, I feel expectant eyes on me, but that old performer within – a younger, much different woman – just doesn’t want to step into the spotlight.  

If someone had told me ten years ago that I would decline to speak at both my beloved grandmother’s and grandfather’s funerals, I wouldn’t have believed it. But alas, that’s in fact what I’ve done. And shockingly, I feel totally okay with it.

Because I just don’t express myself that way any more. I’ve lived quite a lot of life in my now almost-40 years, and I’ve come to understand my emotions a little better. My happiness, pain, love, grief – they are things I don’t necessarily want to give away (save for an occasional blog, which I find myself struggling to write more and more). I mostly want them for myself these days: to study them inside me, to know them intimately, to live with them and grow older and stronger with them in private.

And for that reason, I decided to keep my emotions to myself once again, as we said goodbye to my grandfather this past weekend.

I did, however, put together a short video for his memorial. It’s his story, as I’ve always seen it in my mind’s eye, since I was a little girl, and it was the only way I felt I could communicate and contribute right now.

It’s not my story I wanted to tell, after all; it’s his. 

That’s who I am now; now here’s who he was…

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4 thoughts on “That’s Life

  1. Marlene says:

    A picture speaks a 1000 words.

    • Margaret Wisniewski says:

      It certainly does. Thank you, Marlene. Wish you could have been there, but you were always there for them in real life.

  2. Margaret Wisniewski says:

    Thank you for telling your grandparents story so beautifully, Lisa. It will never be forgotten, thanks to this video. It was the perfect ending to a good life. I am so glad we were all part of it and that you saved it for us. Love you!

  3. Ellen says:

    I love your tribute video. That life has such joy and love in it, that’s easy and beautiful to see. It is also really neat to see yours and your sister’s resemblance in the young pictures of your mom.

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