When two friends recently asked about my niece, I realized I’d left readers hanging in my terror at becoming known only as the Blogger of Tragedy. Short answer? My niece remains inspiring, wonderful and wise beyond my years, let alone her own. Meaning she continues to live her life as if it matters greatly – even when she sometimes wonders why.
She returned to school about 6 weeks after her boyfriend was murdered, but quickly realized she hated it. She had enrolled in a medical office assistant program specifically so she and Dom could get decent jobs and their own place. But with Dom gone, her short-term financial fix felt painfully absurd. The school also offered massage therapy, so despite her dad’s loud bitching (and after sitting alone in her car in the school parking lot for almost an hour, gathering courage to ask her adviser for something that she wanted for no good reason except that she really wanted it …) she requested and received permission to switch.
So come next October she’ll be a licensed massage therapist, when she’ll quit her part-time job at Hallmark and move to California or join crew on a cruise line, travel and do something she loves. She’s writing, too, and at some point she’ll study art and design (another passion). So despite it all, she's miraculously investing in a rich and beautiful future.
Sure, she has moments, like last week when she desperately wanted to throw herself in front of a bus. But she put on a great playlist, drove out into the Nevada star-filled desert, and sobbed and screamed instead. Demanding an answer from the mute universe, until she felt the depth of its apology and compassion again. Then she drove back to the love-filled home she still shares with Dom’s mom and extended family. And finished her homework.
Knowing her remains one of the reasons I am on this earth.