Ten years ago today….

What were you doing? I was visiting my family in Alabama ten years ago, when Princess Diana died.
My Dad was still alive, though in a nursing home with severe Parkinson’s Disease, my daughter in middle school, not college, my son entering his freshman year in college, not living and working in Manhattan.
I can see the moment clearly in my mind…sitting at my Mom’s breakfast room table in her cozy kitchen, chatting, when my sister rushed in. “Did you hear? Princess Diana died in a car crash.”
Like everyone else, we were shocked…couldn’t believe it. “Are you sure? What on earth happened?”
It was difficult to wrap your mind around the fact that someone who was so beautiful, so rich, so famous, so….different from the rest of us could actually be felled by something as mundane as an automobile accident. If those things…the beauty, the money, the bodyguards, the fame…the sheer glamour of her life…couldn’t protect her, what chance did the rest of us have?
It was one really clear reminder of the fragility of our lives…that no matter who we are, life begins and ends the same. We are born and we die. What differs, is what comes in between those two moments. How we live our lives, what we put into them, what we get out of them….that is what matters.

While Diana no doubt would regret getting into that car, that night, and even with the paparazzi pursuing her every move, would she have really changed her life? Doubtful. She had two lovely sons whom she adored, an undeniably glamorous lifestyle…from the outside at least, while perhaps she didn’t have it all, she had a heaping helping.
So ten years later, let us think about what has happened in our lives in that decade. We got the chance to play it out.


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