After this past weekend in South Carolina, I wouldn’t be surprised if I eventually become MooshInCharleston.com. It should also be mentioned that if I did move to Charleston I would also become very unhealthy because biscuits at every meal. My dryer seemed to have worked overtime while I was away because my pants are all just a wee bit tighter today than they were last week.

Charleston - Kiawah, South Carolina

If cruises are where you go to nap, Charleston is where you go to eat. Good heavens, the eating — I returned a changed woman, stuffed to the gill with fresh, hot pralines and enough she-crab soup and biscuits to fuel a small country. Lowcountry cuisine? You have won me.

Everywhere we went seemed to be straight out of a movie, I forgot where I was a few times, sure I had fallen asleep and this was all one crazy, beautiful dream. It’s amazing how scenery so simple can overwhelm every sense. (Especially when there are tree frogs around, mercy, those frogs are loud.)

Charleston - Kiawah, South Carolina

There were six of us total, representing different publications and websites. On the second day we were all getting out of the car to eat more biscuits and soup when one of the girls got a phone call.

Her husband had passed.

…..

No one knew what to do, or what to say. I mean, how can you? Here she was getting what I can only imagine to be one of the worst phone calls of her life while she was far from home surrounded by strangers. Of course all of us figured she’d be on the next flight home, in fact I’m pretty sure we would have been willing to drive her home ourselves — but she stayed — all weekend she stayed with strangers in a strange and beautiful place. Her husband has been ill for awhile, and while he wasn’t “he could go at any moment ill” he did tell her to go live her life.

And so she did.

Even she said there was no sense in going home to just be sad. She took the weekend as a welcome distraction for things settle down and her new reality to sink in.

Charleston - Kiawah, South Carolina

Never before had the phraseBe kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” been so true.

You simply never know what someone is going through.

I learned a lot from her and her courage this weekend, I’m very thankful for her example of grace in the face of unfathomable tragedy.

There seems to be an awful lot of terrible things happening lately, none of which will ever be reported on the news, but terrible all the same.

Death, illness and devastating news seems to be touching the lives of everyone right now, if not directly, than through friends or distant contacts online. It’s a painful and unique sadness knowing so much hurt is out there, knowing there isn’t a whole lot we can do beyond offering our condolences, a prayer, a hug, perhaps a casserole. I’d like to offer everyone a warm cat, but understand the logistics behind such an offering.

It’s equally important to remember that even when it seems everyone else seems to have it worse, we are still allowed to acknowledge the difficult parts of our own lives. It isn’t being ungrateful or selfish, it’s simply being honest.

You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair — Chinese proverb

Charleston - Kiawah, South Carolina

Just like birds, sorrows come and go — it’s all in how you choose to see their arrival and departure (and deal with the crap they leave in their wake.)

If you can, head down to Charleston and watch the birds. Promise it will soothe parts of your soul that have been uneasy for ages.

Charleston - Kiawah, South Carolina

Maybe have a biscuit or two while you’re there as well.

If you’re into feeding your emotions, Charleston is totally the place to do it.

 

Comments

  1. Oh wow. How terribly sad. And yet soothing. One of these days I need to get down there. It’s not so far from here so I really need to. Thanks for sharing these moments.

    Casey Reply:

    @Andrea, It was amazing, every corner of it that we visited. A good place to be sad and happy at the same time.

  2. wow.

    you really do see the beauty in everything don’t you?

    hoping the best for that person’s family to heal….

    Casey Reply:

    @mpotter, I do not see the beauty in eggs touching syrup or roots growing out of potatoes.
    So there’s that.

  3. You had me at carbs and lost me at birds. Those things are scary, and dangerous.

  4. I hope the beauty of the low country helped with her healing during an awful time.

  5. I will tell you again that I just think you’re fantastic. I’m sure that your new friend was thankful to have support and a diversion, and you have such thoughtful responses to others going through pain. It is so true that no one else can know what people are carrying as their invisible weight. I hope I run into you again sometime soon and selfishly, I hope you don’t move to Charleston. I know it’s a lovely place, but I like having you in my general vicinity. :)
    Mary

  6. If you don’t move here, you are always welcome to come visit :-)

  7. That’s one thing I miss about living in North Carolina are the trips to Myrtle Beach, the Outer Banks, Charlotte, Charleston, Jekyll Hide in Georgia, Sarasota, and Tampa to name a few.

    Too bad I didn’t have a blog back in 2006, or 2007 otherwise I would have shared with the world what beautiful places they all are! All I have are scrapbook memories of those moments and thats fine with me.

    Luckily we are on this side of the country to be able to drive down about 15 hours which we haven’t done in a while because we are so spoiled being closer to New England, and the tristates.

    Sorry about your friend’s loss, but I’m glad to hear you had a nice time experiencing Charleston. It truly is beautiful!

  8. Yes. Allowed to acknowledge our difficulty. We can find beauty there, in our challenges, in our vulnerabilities. In all the heartache.

    I’m glad she stayed. And I’m glad you were there with her.

  9. Girl, you need to come to Savannah. It’s Charleston’s sister city!

  10. The sads are touching everyone, including me. On August 26, my 16 year old beloved dachshund passed away in her sleep. Yes, she was old. Yes, she was frail. But she was our world. And it’s been the hardest week in our married life, one that has always known this dog in it (we got her 3 months after we got married).

    I maintain…odd numbered years suck

  11. I also think that a warm cat makes everything better. Especially a nice squishy, chubby one.

  12. Amy in StL says:

    I moved back to the midwest from Charleston in 2006 and every time I tell people they always ask why the heck I would move! It’s an amazing city with amazing food and history and beaches and people. I moved to be closer to my aging parents, but nothing else could have drug me away!

    steph Reply:

    Amy! I was born and raised in Charleston, but it took a lot to bring me back. I LOVE St. Louis and am a Midwesterner at heart. I hope to be back out your way again soon…and come visit the Holy City anytime :-)