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On love and reaching out

I stand in the mirror, unable to believe or even admit that I am 66 years old.  That age seemed unattainable to me when I was younger, wittier, faster and vibrant with hope. I smile now at that auburn-haired woman before me. 

Even I can see how my eyes shine — refusing to hold a steady gaze because my eyes are busy these days: giggling, glowing and dancing.

I am sure there are many who tire of my constant chatter about my love.  I would not be surprised to hear that some hold their breath when I am in the vicinity, wondering if I will launch into my true love crescendo.   I did not intend to succumb to the deliciousness of an authentic and genuine love, but here I am – my heart throbbing in perfect sync with the heart of the man who stepped into my darkness and took me by the hand.   

We are planning a wedding in late spring and I must say that I am consumed, in the most wonderful way, with the plans for this event.  How shall I decorate the venue?  What foods will be the final choice?  Will the music we select get us up on our feet and dancing?  What words will I choose when I write my vows?  What about the wedding cake?  It has to be perfect, my friends.  And finally, the dress. I have chosen my wedding gown and the experience itself proved to be quite an adventure; I will share that Northern Yarn with you soon.  

So, here I am, right on the fringe of the holiday season with countless plans and notions.  I have no time to stare at unpacked boxes, clothes draped over my dining room chairs, and piles of books that beg to be read.  I smile now.  I laugh and I cry. I have reacquainted myself with my Kitchen Aid mixer.  I am back to reading three books at a time and I am writing once again.  I am using makeup and wearing colorful clothing and jewelry.  I am even going to a hockey game soon.  I am living.  

In my situation, grief counseling and my newfound love were the medicines that quieted my deep depression. It is not the same for everyone, however.  I must encourage you to seek the advice of a medically trained professional if you are dealing with depression.  There is no shame in that, my friends.  With the proper counseling and the appropriate medicine, depression can be treated.  

Depression is real.  It is a mental illness; it is not a phase or a lingering emotion.  Depression can be crippling.  Please remember to take good care of yourself, my friends.  Be kind to yourself and each other and do not be afraid to reach out and ask for a helping hand.  

Belinda Ouellette lives in Caribou with her Goldendoodle, Barney.  You may email her at belindaouellette9@gmail.com.

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