A few weeks before I made my life changing decision, I received some terrible news. On the 27th of October my friend took her own life. It was entirely unexpected and out of the blue. We were all in utter shock.
I only knew Cara for a matter of months, 4 at most. She was a regular at the juice bar where I’d been working and was a close family friend of the owners. We instantly struck up a friendship and I would look forward to our Tuesday 3pm chats. I would make her smoothie just the way she liked it, served upon a napkin and without a straw of course.
We would chat about anything and everything. I believe I knew the outline of her life story within 2 weeks of meeting her, just as many other fellow customers would too. She would tell her worries to everyone, her troubles, past, present and future. She would speak of losing her mother on a near daily basis, reliving the pain yet never quite getting the closure she needed. I was always there to lend an ear and allow her space to just be herself. I can’t say that I never did judge her, but I certainly judged her less than most.
From the first day we spoke, I knew that she was carrying around a heavy burden that nobody could quite lift. Our conversations were almost always around death, men and the afterlife. If we weren’t gossiping about past relationships, we would be talking about spirits and mockingly planning our funerals. Not once did it cross my mind that she may have been joining up the pieces about how or when she wanted to go.
Cara was unapologetically herself. Negative most would say, but a little lost I’d confirm. She would strike up friendships with everyone, whether you wanted to or not, and that is what I admired. She was seeking answers in everybody she laid eyes upon, hoping that by sharing her story, they would show her the solution. Sadly that was never the case. Losing her mother and then shortly after, the family pet, she never could deal with loss. It was as if the dark cloud always followed her wherever she went and no matter how much sunshine there could be, it was always there, waiting.
I never knew Cara had suffered from depression nor had experienced suicidal tendencies. Although most of her words were of a negative strain, she was never void of a smile on her face. Her sense of humour was contagious and her laugh unique. We would laugh uncontrollably when telling our stories to one another and mock just how silly we both were. I never got any work done in our Tuesday hour together, and I am so thankful for that.
Cara allowed me to be unapologetically myself. She is one of the only people who truly saw me for who I was, at soul level. She made me feel at home. But more importantly, she made me feel like I was enough.
Losing her was the push I needed to make the change. She came into my life to teach me to be authentically and unapologetically myself. To be true to who I am as a person and not care what anybody else thinks.
Despite having days where I miss her, I am so comforted in knowing that she is at peace. She has joined her mother and the cat Dusk and I am certain it is where she belongs. Without the tragic loss, I would never have found myself again. I would never have started writing my story or shining my light to encourage others to do the same.
Whether you believe in spirit guides, guardian angels, ghosts or the like, I know Cara is guiding me. She is with me on every step of this journey. I take comfort in the fact that her door had to close so that mine could open.
Cara, you were the ever-unfolding rose. You were cracked open through hurt and loss. Everything happened for you, not to you. And, it is now my duty to continue that journey for you, allow your death to become a blessing, not a tragedy.
You saved me when I couldn’t save you.
Thank you for leading me back to my purpose.
I love you.