“Cristina and Rob have passed away in their sleep from carbon monoxide intoxication.” That was the news I got on November 2nd, 2004. I remember the day clearly because I had just come back from voting. They passed away in their sleep after lighting up the fireplace in their bedroom –They hadn’t realized that the flume in their fireplace was closed. –
When you get shocking news you always remember where you were and what you were doing.
This week, the day I was going to go vote, 18 years later, I also got the sad news that our friend Lia Rosen had passed away.
I’ve been sitting with this news.
I’ve been trying to process the information, even though I’m still working through it, I’ve learned 6 key lessons about voting, death and grief.
Change my Limiting beliefs. It’s funny that this week in my Money Magic Miracles Class I was teaching how to shift our limiting beliefs. The first thing you have to do is identify the limiting belief, in this case “I’m scared to go vote because I might receive some tragic news or someone will die.” Second, look for proof and evidence that this isn’t true. I have gone out to vote in other moments of my life without any tragic news taking place that day. –Some of the voting times the tragic news was about who got elected at that time. 😂– Third: reframe the belief in a different way. I can still go out to vote and have a positive outcome. –Which I did, I chose to go vote on a different day and brought my daughter to fill in the ballot with me. I can now shift this memory into a positive one.
Give myself permission without judgment. Last time I got this news of my friends passing in 2004 I did not give myself permission to grieve. I just went to work, tried to hold my tears back and told myself “I’ll deal with this on my own, I’m strong, do not show weakness.” It was as if this was ingrained in me that “you’re not allowed to show your emotions because you will be perceived as a weak person. And don’t even think about shedding tears or sharing your feelings with others because they will definitely call you out on your weakness.” Now 18 years later I had a bunch of calls, podcast recordings,and meetings to tend to this week. I didn’t want to disappoint others, I didn’t want to show that I’m not a hard worker. I almost went through with all the commitments to not have to feel the emotions. This time I stopped, I checked in with myself and realized I wasn’t in the energetic space to “work hard,” deliver and that I needed some solo time. Everyone understood and we’ve rescheduled. It’s so important to give ourselves permission to grieve in whatever shape or form it may come: you might want to cry, you might not, you might want to be with people or you might want to spend time alone. You might want to dive deep into work or just take off. There is not a right way of grieving, you just have to allow the emotions to work their way through and honor the feelings.
Our time is limited. When you get news of someone in your circle passing away it’s always such a reminder of our own mortality. It makes you realize that although you might feel invincible or that you might have many more years or decades on this planet, there’s no guarantee. I’ve lost several friends before the age of 40 and they were younger than that age when they died. The gift in their passing at such a young age is the reminder to go after my dreams. I pass this reminder to you: don’t keep postponing things for tomorrow, next week, next month or next year. If there’s something that you’re tolerating in your life: the job you don’t like, the relationship that annoys you, the circumstances you’re in… Do something about it, find the courage, the resources and support and follow your dreams, don’t keep postponing them!
Stop living for others. Along the same lines of the previous teaching, did you know that one of the top regrets of the dying is: “I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” If you’re the type of person that tends to be a people pleaser or you’re trying to be liked by others I encourage you to stop and think why you are doing certain things and ask yourself “Am I doing this for me or for someone else?” This goes for a lot of the ladies, we still have a lot of patriarchal programming of how we should serve others (husbands, kids, parents, friends, etc) before serving ourselves because it’s seen as selfish. I beg you to stop this behavior and start living for yourself first and then give to others.
Connect and love. Another top regret of the dying is: “I wished I would had stayed in touch with my friends." The ultimate experience that every human is looking for is connection and love. Make sure to tell your loved ones you love them, connect with your friends and family. Forgive them if there’s anything they did wrong. Forgive yourself, and ultimately don’t take your loved ones for granted, remind them of what they mean to you.
I’m grateful to have had my friend Lia Rosen cross paths in this life.
I’m grateful for the light that she shined on me and all that she came across with.
I’m grateful for the lessons learned in her transition.
I’m grateful to you for having read this far and being in my life.
PS: No matter what limiting belief you might’ve had regarding voting please go out to vote this week. It’s a right that many people around the world don’t have. Be the change you want to see in the world by voting.
PPS: I brought my daughter voting with me and she filled out the whole ballot. It was a wonderful new memory and belief that I have ingrained in my mind forever.