Article
Article
Blogs
The Intersection of Joy and Sadness

The month of April held a poignant and powerful intersection for me—perhaps a fitting way to end my tenure as Founding Director of this organization that I love.

On April 19th at our Tenth Anniversary Gala, I experienced the most unimaginable joy as hundreds gathered to celebrate our first decade of bringing people together across lines of difference. The program was a rapid-fire tribute to the complex and creative work we have done in our first decade. The love in the room was palpable. I cannot begin to express—there simply aren't words—how grateful I am for the overwhelming support for Intersections, and for me personally, that so many shared with me both from the stage and one-on-one over dinner and during the interactive times.

Our honorees gave amazing tributes to the innovative work of Intersections these past ten years, and countless individuals whose lives have been enriched by our work offered words of gratitude and praise. It was a truly memorable night, evoking the broadest of smiles and touching the most tender parts of my heart.

But life has a way of interrupting even our most joyous times. The evening was spent against the backdrop of knowing that my father was struggling through his final days, and on Sunday, April 30, at the age of 95, he passed from this life to the next. He tenaciously hung on, despite having neither food nor liquid (except for a few ice chips) for three weeks. His stubbornness allowed him time to say good bye to each family member, as we surrounded him with love, respect and affection in those last days. My mother and sister were tireless caregivers and for that I will be forever inspired and in debt.

My Dad was an exquisite role model—always strong willed, but kind and generous to the end, even retaining his sense of humor as he joked with a nursing staff that embodied graciousness in attention and care. Yet his loss marks, for me, unfathomable sadness just days after such indescribable joy.

And so my time with Intersections comes to an appropriate end at one of those fundamental intersections in life: grief alongside joy; death interrupting life; the hope for my Dad's very personal resurrection setting a hopeful context for my final days at the office. It has been a remarkable journey and I am grateful to each and every one of you, dear readers, who have made this journey so instructive and so inspirational. I have been forever changed because of you, and I look forward to our paths crossing once again in the next chapter in ways yet unplanned and unimagined.

Blessings, my friends.
Bob

Share: