Farewell, Kate Spade
Today is the day that we all found out that Kate Spade took her life. I don't know her, didn't know her, or her family. I think when a public figure dies, in some ways we process their death in a different way because of a different relationship with them. So, while I cannot at all comment on her actual wellness, life, and struggles, I find it symbolic of a shift for women of around my age...
First, my prayers are always with anyone who has been through this or similar tragedies. Tragedies on a personal, first-hand level always tear apart the lives involved and I always wish everyone well on the super insanely intense journey of processing and reassembling a new reality in light of what has transpired. I do feel self-conscious in voicing a personal impact for a tragedy I am so minutely and distantly impacted by.
With that said, when thinks happen and I try to process them, I write. :)
Kate Spade impacted my generation, for sure, and she set the tone of what classic New York style was and - is all about, in my opinion. I am a New Yorker who grew up around the 1990s. ;) With her incredible, timeless style, Kate Spade embodied that part of me who wanted to be Audrey Hepburn with my time in Manhattan, she wrapped it up in my prep school days. It was both who I was and symbolic of where I was from, but it was also who I aspired to be style wise.
Even when I could easily afford her things, and when I knew she'd sold her company, it was still meaningful to consider new Kate Spade acquisitions each season and I loved seeing what was new.
After leaving New York, and then the general vicinity years later, these types of ties to home and what it meant to be a New Yorker became even more emotional, while being instantly symbolic of times and places and memories.
While establishing my office space most recently, I got KS desk items, more stationary, some sunglasses, etc. The legacy of her brand spoke to me for decades and her style was still ever-present in my life when her life ended.
And suicide changes things, not only because I can relate having had suicidal thoughts during a lengthy period of post-partum depression, but because it causes so many of us to actually stop and really look to reprioritize…
Now more than ever, we owe it to our children, to our friends, to our families, and to our world to seek inner peace and everlasting happiness, and to teach them that putting society’s requirements in front of their own heart is not the way to live a life in peace.
While we face, or watch friends face, our first brush with serious things, while we see our parents’ longevity called into question, we owe it to ourselves to get to know who we are. We must spend time alone, in quiet, even in lives that never seem a second dull, and we must ask ourselves important questions that only we can answer.
As part of the age-old Hawaiian philosophy of Hoʻoponopono, there is a tenant of complete responsibility. I am not asking that we open up to rekindle our relationship with us because we might find that this person, or that job, or that partner, or this friend or acquaintance is causing us a single ounce of frustration. I am not asking that we built a friendship with our inner divine beings so that we can look to our past or our present and reprimand ourselves for all of our mistakes.
I am pleading with us to open up our hearts to selfishly know ourselves because our continuous longing for external satisfaction and our continuous comparisons with people and yard sticks we don’t even understand will never – never – make us happy. And if we are not truly in touch with our true selves, we will radiate an energy that leaves those around us completely unsettled.
We are perfect. We are walking perfection now. With all of the aforementioned blunders and physical ailments. We don’t need to feel anything we have done fully in order to atone for a mistake, even a grave one.
The simplest thing we can do now to change our own lives -- and all of our lives -- is to feel good now. Is struggle necessary? It is clearly something with which we are all familiar, but what is wrong with trusting the part of us that seeks happiness? Do we truly have to “earn” happiness or struggle to attain a “reward”? Weren’t we born in a natural state of love and joy and don’t we really just want to know to feel that, constantly and consistently again?
Start now. Please begin now. Don’t be afraid of what you may see when you stop for a moment and spend time with yourself. Don’t be concerned with all the thoughts that may come that you didn’t even know you were having?
Just feel good.
Begin by thinking of things that fill you with love. Maybe even your current loving and lovely pet meeting the ones who came before. Imagine them together playing in your living room. Think of your favorite people from every part of your life and imagine them sitting down with a pot of coffee. In the sun. With the slightest breeze. And the perfect temperature. Imagine conversation under a cool sun that never goes down.
It is alright to dream still. Do it for you.
Do it for your children who are being asked to run around like never before and do so many more things than ever before. Show them the path to peace and love and happiness.
Have faith that everything really will come together just fine.