Carpe Diem Day Superhero
Carpe Diem Day is coming up this week and in that spirit, I’d like to honor Carpe “Dee O’M” (aka Dee O’Malley) as this year’s honored recipient of the much acclaimed Carpe Diem Day Superhero Award!
The last time I picked a Carpe Diem Award Winner it was Carpe “Lee M.”! Lee donated her late husband’s book collection to a Rehab and Nursing Center.
The original Carpe Diem Day was inspired by Craig Dunham, who lost his life to ALS in 2010. His initials, CD, along with his “live life fully” attitude are what prompted me to pick “Carpe Diem” as my mantra.
What do each of these three Carpe Diem inspirations have in common besides living life fully?
Yes, each of these three Carpe Diem Superheroes have earned admiration from me, not just because of living life fully, but because they do so (or did so), despite challenge, grief, and hardships.
Dee, at age 88, was told she only had a couple of months left to live and was put on hospice care. That was almost 2 years ago! I wrote a blog post about her then titled:
Dee is not afraid of dying. In fact, she is very much looking forward to, what she calls, the “ultimate adventure.” Dee is also very dynamic, witty, happy, and full of good humor. She looks and acts much younger than her 90 years!
Despite physical ailments, she never complains! She has had falls and broken bones and so many problems that I’m sure doctors are scratching their heads trying to figure out what the super-power is that keeps her alive.
Dee’s Superpowers: Optimism, humor, fearlessness
Could it be that Dee’s longevity is due to her optimism, humor, and lack of fear? According to studies, the less we fear aging and death, the longer we will live healthy, happy lives.
Certainly, that’s not a universal truth as we all know. Many happy, optimistic people, such as Craig, still die young.
And we all die, no matter how optimistic we are. It will be hard for me to accept Dee’s death, even though I know it’s inevitable. Just because she’s accepted it (and even is looking forward to it!) doesn’t mean those of us who love her are in any rush for her to die. Every minute that she’s on this earth is a better minute for those of us who love her.
My Fairy Godmother
Dee, my mother’s best friend, has always referred to herself as my “Fairy Godmother.” She has been close enough to our family that I think of her as a beloved Aunt. I’ve always admired her spunky confidence and fearless attitude. She’s been my “fairy godmother” in life and will continue to be so after she dies.
Now, in this final chapter of her life, she’s still guiding me with her humor and grace. Though I doubt I will be able to show the same good humor when my time comes, I’ll remember that she’ll be wherever I’m going and show me how to live the afterlife to the fullest!
(Of course, given her uncanny super-power, she may out-live me and I’ll just have to hang out with all those other dead people until she joins us.)
February 15, 2024 Update: Another year, and Dee, at age 91, is as witty and vibrant as ever.