Monday, January 16, 2006

what will my epitaph say

What's going to happen when I have my face-to-face with God? Is he going to ask me if I was a liar, a thief and a cheat? If lying tops his, “What not to do list”, I’m fucked! I’m queen of the yarn. What I hear and what you say will never find common ground, regardless of how many times you ask me to repeat it. A story just isn’t a story without a dash of embellishment and a pinch of Katie. As for cheating, I ask, “What really constitutes cheating?” Semantics. Nicely done, Schwartz. Like God never saw that one coming. I would never take credit for something I didn’t do. Though, I did cheat on a few tests in high school, but just the ones I couldn’t be asked to study for. I’ve never done anything spiteful, or hurtful. Oops, there I go lying again. There was that pesky divorce in 99’. But, hey, that doesn’t count. The relationship was so dead it was petrified and he couldn’t leave well enough alone. I think stealing is a gray area. Does one cappuccino and 20 packets of sugar in the raw really amount to stealing? What about ashtrays? I have the God given cleavage of a woman who’s earned the right to boost at least one ashtray and three place settings at a time. As for those delightful cheese samples at Whole Foods, their cheeses are so distinctive, I need at least 15 cubes to justify the impulse buy.

Did I do unto others as I would want done unto me? Or, did I do unto others with expectations that if went unmet were received with silence? Was I unconditionally giving? Or did I give knowing that I would get something in return? Did I love completely or to the best of my abilities? And, if those abilities limited my capacity, did I do more then just seek to change? Did I live fully? Do the authors of my epitaph feel that I did? More importantly, do I? Or did I just live fully in my head where I housed my ideal self? Did I rise above my crippling fears, or give them carte blanche? When my tag expires, when my life flashes before me and God and I are sharing a pitcher of martinis over Manhattan on a blustery autumn day, will I justify my actions and beg for a second chance, or will I feel sated?

You see I’m not confronting my mortality. I’m confronting my life, because in the end I want my epitaph to read, Katie was funny, fearless, passionate, bright and deeply loving. She strived for greatness within herself and for her life. She was an innovative thinker. She made people laugh. She had high aspirations and voraciously pursued them. She was a loving wife (probably to many. What can I say? My mother and my sister think I’m going to be a serial marrier. Is that so terrible? ) An idealistic and adoring mother, a dynamic and loyal friend and very much a soulful sister. Katie lived each day as if it were the last, rising with the sun and laying down with the voluptuous late moon. She was someone worth knowing and having in your life. Her quirkiness lifted your spirit. Her tenderness filled you with warmth. Her wit surprised, or healed a broken heart. Katie will be missed, but always remembered for how she lived, those who embraced her and the life that she lived OH, so loudly.

published in
new york opinion


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