Have you ever met someone who could love deeply? Someone who could make you feel that whatever emotions were running through you were alright, help you through the particularly challenging ones and get excited about your dreams? Someone who you felt unfaltering support from, who was "there" for you and at the same time living their own life with a zest and intensity that affected every living soul in their midst? I did, just under a year ago. She was a fellow seeker in the six-month e-life coaching class I took with Patti Digh and David Robinson. This week Celeste Martin Rast left her earth life in one quick breath. To say that we, in the class, are all reeling from the news is an understatement and the common thread we are sharing together with our emails is the legacy she left. How incredibly alive she made each of us feel, what an inspiration she was and is by living fully and without regret. She made each and everyone of us feel special and that is a gift.
I was planning a trip to see her in July. She believed enough in a dream I had to help me get lift-off for it, and I was waiting for Riley to finish the school year so I could bring him with me; I knew I just had to meet this incredible woman and I wanted him to feel her energy too. Logically this loss should be overwhelming, should be pushing me down deeper into the quagmire where I have lived the last three months, instead I am lifted, buoyed by the thoughts of how she lived her life. I am thinking that I want and need to aspire to do that too. Because I have seen what it does and there is nothing parallel to it.
One of the exercises in Patti's book, "37 Days, Life is a Verb" and in our e-coaching class, was to write our own obituaries, in a way we want to be remembered. In Celeste's own words, hers read, "She loved intensely, awakened excited each day to see what was ahead, cared deeply, was engaged fully with the person in her presence, and danced as if no one was looking." Indeed.
I am here to say that one person can make a difference. Living by example. Loving intensely. Caring deeply. This is all stuff that has the power to change lives. While my soul weeps for the missed opportunity of meeting her in person, for the absence of her voice, I can't help but feel grateful that I see what her life brought to me and so many, many others.
Can I love so intensely, care so deeply, engage so fully that I make a difference? Oh, I hope so.
Celeste and David Robinson earlier this year:
Can you feel the love?