In January of this year (2016) I did what I always do every year. Set a few goals; create some objectives and strategies to achieve those goals. Additionally, I always look for a theme song for the year to motivate me for the coming 52 weeks.
This year I chose “Brave” by Sara Bareilles. I then proceeded to tweet the artist to let her know I believe the song represents a movement. I did not know that my brave would be tested to its maximum until October 4, 2016 when I received news that my daughter had passed away in her sleep in New York.
My daughter died from complications associated with alcoholism and was subject to relationships that can only be classified as driven by domestic violence in some cases. I did everything I could to help her overcome her challenges but when a child is an adult you have to comply with their wishes no matter the consequences to them.
The long and horrid journey associated with dependency had destroyed her body and ravaged her spirit. I purchased a ticket for her to leave NY to travel to Atlanta and stay with me so that I could care for her but she never woke up to catch the plane. The phone rang and all I remember was a voice saying “Aubry. . .she is gone. . .Krystal is gone!”
Confusion and Hurt
For the first time in my life I was completely numb and void of natural feeling; only confusion and hurt permeated my mind and spirit. I had to refocus quickly and go take care of my daughters’ remains holding back tears and anger. I hurriedly booked a flight to New York and was frustrated because I attempted to board two flights and missed both because of wrong information from airline. Placed on a plane to Midway (Chicago) en-route to NY I discovered upon arrival no ticket was booked for me to New York.
I knew then, that I was being challenged to reach my daughter in New York. I recognized that someone was testing my toughness. I remained calm. I was sensitive feeling the thoughts of people and things around me as I never did before. A sense of heightened emotion encompassed me. I surrendered to the peace and calm in the midst of this storm so I would not blow up.
Thanks to the professionalism of the Southwest supervisor in Chicago I was placed on a flight after she reviewed the error was facilitated in Atlanta. I was now on my way to New York where I went directly to the morgue and identified the body and started proceedings for a memorial service after ordering a full autopsy.
Today, I am in Barbados to recuperate and also create a foundation in memory of my daughter and for young women and men who struggled with the issues that caused my daughters passing. The trip is also a bucket list item for Krystal who wanted to visit Barbados again to engage her Caribbean heritage.
I have met with several women organizations while on Island as I chart a course for the establishment of The Krystal Padmore Foundation and partnership with these local organizations with a global reach