The Show Must Go On

"When I heard the news I was still shocked. I went to the hospital. I saw her body and that’s when I told everyone at Skate Canada I would skate. I think just the fact I said it, it was like no turning back, I had to do it. There was a moment (I went through lots of ups and downs) there were some moments where I just wanted to go home, take the first plane and see my family and friends at home…but I knew that’s what my Mom would want me to do, to compete because this is my dream. And in 10 years from now, I knew that if I wouldn’t have skated here, I would have regrets so that’s why I did it." ~Joannie Rochette

I am reminded of standing in the room with my Mother after she passed. I’m not sure how to describe the feeling of being with a soulless body. The visual representation of the body is much like looking through Mom’s belongings and photos. It’s familiar to you, but there is nobody there. It was when I became absolutely convinced we have souls. The room was absent of life in a very surreal way and so while seeing her dead body was upsetting, I remember telling my sister, "She’s not here." After all, a person is not their flesh and bone. I left not long after because really, there was no reason to stay. Mom left her body there, so I felt I should too.

For Joannie, she heard about the passing of her Mother in Vancouver and ended up skating two days later and then again on Thursday night to take a very courageous Bronze Medal. I don’t claim to know how she felt standing in that room as I was prepared for Mom to leave us whereas she wasn’t, but I do wonder if Joannie was also aware that her Mom was not there but somewhere above her and with her. For this, I can understand why she could have felt closer to her Mom on the ice than that hospital much like I feel closer to Mom at the piano.

Her quote above was an interview where the one thing that really popped out to me was when she said, "I think just the fact I said it, it was like no turning back, I had to do it."

Much of my life, I would keep what I was doing a secret so that if I decided not to do it, I could back out. It’s a safety net. In fact, I wouldn’t even proclaim it to myself so as not to disappoint ME! I am sure that for Joannie the proclamation meant she had to go forward.

Her heart is a good point of inspiration. In a traumatic time, she was faced with many decisions. She said she would skate and she moved ahead but proclamations are a good way to be definitive and they actually assist a bad situation. The term we are familiar with is "Executive decision". It’s when a bunch of people can’t make a decision and someone stands up and says, "This is what has to happen." I admire these people because while I’m not into dictatorship, I do think wishy-washy doesn’t fly very well in times of extreme shock. Much like when my Doctor met me in the halls and asked if the Eye Bank could use Mom’s eyes and how time-sensitive it was, I had to rifle through a series of emotions including questions about whether a cancer patient could even donate them. Being decisive not only saves time, but it is a pledge, a commitment and keeps an orderly and natural flow to the bad things that happen to us. So for the nay-sayers who suggest Joannie was selfish in wanting a medal and that’s why she did it, I think it’s time to add the human soul element into the one-dimensional thought process, because a much deeper, much larger picture is being missed.

For all of you who are sitting on the fence about some big decision you have to make, I encourage you to make a choice….a proclamation. Even if it’s just writing it down on paper, being definitive to others around you and to yourself tends to cut the time down immensely and the time period of suffering shortens. This doesn’t mean we don’t require a certain amount of thinking time when allowed and that a grieving process won’t happen. It also doesn’t mean there won’t be hurdles along the way, but the time up until the executive decision is perhaps time frittered away when we are being pulled in a very intuitive direction that we are ignoring because we are fearful. In some cases, the lack of a decision (especially one like Joannie’s which is so good for her soul) can keep us in chains and shackled to regret…which in my opinion is worse than the situation we are faced with. Regret is one of the nastiest emotions of all. Imagine how enlightened this girl is to know that she faced the potential of facing this regret in 10 years time. Amazing spirit!

ROCK ON my friends,
Karen :)

"Inside my heart is breaking, my make-up may be flaking but my smile still stays on." ~Freddie Mercury (Show Must Go On)


  1. i love ya girl!! you always touch my heart and make me think!! you are truly amazing!!

  2. There are those who I wish had this kind of awareness and capability for acknowledgment even now... It would certainly make my life much less complicated sometimes...