My Etiquette Eye

 Hello readers and fellow bloggers. My blog this month is not my usual fare of etiquette tips, stories, and conversation.  I actually have struggled with whether to release this publicly, wait for the longer version in book form, or to just keep it to myself and not share at all.  Well, here I am in the wee hours of the morning, taking a break from another writing assignment, and I find myself compelled to write and share right now, in this moment.  One of the most important tenets of etiquette is making others around you feel comfortable, even if you yourself are uncomfortable.  I would be remiss not to share this episode of my life, where I've had to muster up all the etiquette I know and teach for myself to mind my manners during a most difficult season in my life.  As I've already stated, this is not the type of blog, I would normally share here on this platform, but again, I feel I must, so here we are.  


It has been my personal experience in the last two months, to attend two funerals in less than two months of each other.  Both were unexpected, both were very dear to me and took my by great surprise.  I did not anticipate either of them and barely had the chance to grasp the fullness of the first before the second descended upon me with a new grief I could not even at first embrace.  My heart and emotions were still numb, knowing that my love, my heart, my spiritual partner, was gone, never again to return to this realm.  I could say that getting that second call and the news that ensued made me feel as if I'd been hit by a Mack truck, (and I'm probably dating myself here, lol!), or hit with a ton of bricks, or that I even passed out on the floor crying and wailing.  None of those are true.  Well, I did do some screaming at my daughter when she called to tell me that my brother was gone, but that was to get some clarity and understanding of what she was telling me.  I quickly came to understand that her news was the truth as my brother's eldest stepdaughter sent me an IM that I was to call her immediately as she had something very important to tell me. 

How could I find direction and peace in the midst of all this loss?  Heart-wrenching, guttural pain, unimaginable grief, sorrow, and tears.  I should have felt lost, bereft beyond reason, and I will not make the claim that on some days I felt just that way.  Some days I cried until I just couldn't cry anymore.  Some days I was weak beyond measure, some days I was literally sick to my stomach.  Other days I could not function, eat, work or make sense of what had happened to two men I loved dearly.  On those days, my physical grief overwhelmed me in private, but publicly, I remained mannerable, remembering the protocols of etiquette and behaving with dignity and decorum.  Only in my private world with my Lord, the gift of my youngest daughter and my closest, dearest friends, and some family members did I betray the protocols of etiquette and allowed my grief its due as I sometimes could not even speak for the pain and then for the PEACE.  PEACE? Did you say PEACE, Lady Victoria?  Yes, my audience, yes, I did say PEACE. 

The day I learned of the terrible incident that had befallen, my spiritual mate, was the day my PEACE began.  My God Yehovah, spoke to me in the most Beautiful and Comforting way, on the day I received this heart-shattering news, that all was well with the Spirit of this man I loved so dearly.  As I subjected my will to the Will of my Father, I received PEACE and instruction.  This PEACE and instruction carried me for three weeks until I memorialized my love and his remains were put to rest.  It carried me for another three weeks until I memorialized my brother.  This same PEACE is yet carrying me today.  The days I completely lost it, my composure, my manners and seemingly a bit of my mind, did not erase the PEACE my God had already given me.  In my human exhibition of fleshly grief, my spiritual download, my anchor, remained intact.  It kept me rooted, in place, sane, above the tumultuous storm, that surely could have taken me over had it not been for PEACE.  You see, Life and Death really do go together.  You truly can't have one without having the other.  There's only one way to get out of this life, and that way is by getting in.  Intellectually, we know this, but oftentimes, the reality of living your life without the ones you love may seem impossible.  I am here to tell you as a living witness, that nothing is impossible with God.  Our shortcoming is that we often stand in our own way.  While I appreciate everyone who has shown me love and offered your condolences, in various forms, I've not written this blog to elicit tearful responses and the over-indulgences of sympathy.  It is not my desire to offend anyone, but rather to offer encouragement, strength and perhaps insight and light to someone else that may be grieving and carrying the heavy burden of sorrow.  You don't have to be weighted down and carry the burden alone.  You don't have to do any of it alone.  You too can benefit from the same PEACE that I have.   All you need do is ask in faith, and God will provide if you believe.

Thank you for reading and sharing my blog.  I pray you are strengthened, encouraged and comforted, for I wrote as Lord God commanded me to.  Until the next blog, be in good etiquette health and may PEACE be with you all.  

Lady Victoria,

Your Go-to-Etiquette Expert