I got lonely on my soapbox, like I was some kind of super hero, my cape flapping in the breeze. The moniker, Climate Change Warrior, started to weigh on me. It felt aggressive and combative.
At the end of October, my sister Eliana was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The surgeon met me in the recovery room post biopsy, took my hand, looked into my eyes and said…
It was quiet in my growing up house. We closed the front door with silent deliberation and spoke to one another in soft tones. My parents didn’t raise their voices, either in anger or delight. We kept our feelings of fear, grief, sadness, even joy, corseted close, as if their release would tip the earth from her axis. Tears happened in muffled sobs in the corner of a bedroom. There was no room for anger.
Mary Robinson, the first female President of Ireland and Maeve Higgins, an Irish comic based in New York City have a brand-new podcast called Mothers of Invention (it was Mary’s idea, even though she didn’t know what a podcast was. Can I call her “Mary”? Somehow it doesn’t seem right…okay fine–“President Robinson”). They are talking to amazing women all over the world who are driving solutions for climate change.
A friend of mine came up to me after one of the shows: “I had no idea Sarah struggled so much. She’s always so full of life, so animated,” she said. “I’ve been going through a hard time, but I don’t talk about it. I can’t talk about it. But when Sarah so boldly told her truth, something opened up for me. Tell her thank you,” she said. She was crying.