Honour those who’ve Gone Before – Send 2016 to its Grave – and Fight!

This is a difficult post to write… We are at the rear end of 2016
and many of us are very pleased to see it close.
I’m not blaming the year itself, but it’s as good a time as any to start anew…


It’s been tough year politically, personally, and for many of us devastating in different ways. We have mourned political change, grieved lost and broken promises, and endured lies and political manoeuvres. We’ve lost celebrities, almost at a rate of several a month, and we have lost many close to us. Members of my own family and my husband’s family have lost loved ones, and we are holding those still in ill health close to us. As human beings we have also mourned the loss of families and individuals unable to escape war and destruction, and have seen refugees both rescued and shunned.


© Lisa Shambrook

We’ve been hit by celebrity losses, usually those who’ve been part of our formative years, like Harper Lee who inspired me with To Kill a Mockingbird, Alan Rickman who’s acting has been a delight, and as a huge Star Trek and Star Wars fangirl: Anton Yelchin who played Star Trek’s latest incarnation of Chekov, Kenny Baker – R2D2, and yesterday, Carrie Fisher. You’ll be able to add many more to that list, as we’ve all been affected by those we loved.


I’ve been hit more this year by the personal losses, not only mine, but many around me have lost loved ones. I was deeply affected by the murder of Jo Cox during the Brexit campaign. It added to my despair of humanity that someone who preached “We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than the things that divide us.” could lose her life to an extremist. It was a terrible indictment on society.


© Lisa Shambrook

My personal depression grew and was compounded throughout the year with the political and public reaction to refugees and those escaping regimes and war. I wondered where compassion had gone that society could publicly turn away from those in need?


© Lisa Shambrook

At the beginning of September I stood in a place I never want to stand again. I won’t go into detail but I was on the cusp of becoming one of 2016’s statistics. After that night, I went for help and am currently taking antidepressants and counselling. My depression has grown over the years as I’ve spread myself thin to help care for my ailing parents and battle for help through Social Services.


© Lisa Shambrook

Last Thursday, after about twelve years of constant illness including breast cancer, then secondary breast cancer of the bones, severe diabetes, a partially collapsed lung, glaucoma, and progressive Alzheimer’s, my mum peacefully passed away in hospital with pneumonia. Her Alzheimer’s had broken my heart, and almost taken my dad. I am currently coping with grief and relief, and everything this year has thrown at us.


Yesterday, Carrie Fisher passed away after a massive heart attack. I loved her for more than just Star Wars…she fought for mental health awareness, she battled addictions, and kicked the media’s ass when they attacked her for her looks and weight when she returned to Star Wars. She knew who she was, she was excellent at what she did, and fought for what she wanted. Carrie Fisher made Princess Leia badass and turned her into a fighter, who survived and lead the resistance even when the men in her life let her down. Princess Leia grew into General Organa, and Carrie did the same in her personal life.


© Lisa Shambrook

It’s hard for me to lose my mother, then another inspirational woman, but when we lose heroes we need to try and live what they taught us. My mother taught me much, and I have aspired to be an even better mother to my own children, and I want them to live in a world where those who’ve gone before have made the world better.


© Lisa Shambrook

So, in the words of Anne Thériault on Twitter –  ‘May we all be able to get up every day and, in spite of our pain and loss and fear, put on our boots and vest and plan to destroy the empire.’ (Check out Anne’s thread on Princess Leia/General Organa…it rocks!) This is how we live, how we continue to go on, to move forward and to honour those who’ve gone. We honour those who’ve trail-blazed, who’ve worked hard, and who’ve left us more to do – so, let’s do it!

Be bold, be Leia. Be true, be Carrie Fisher…


Let’s relegate 2016 to the dark and distant past, and kick 2017 into gear and fight!

We have empires to destroy!


21 thoughts on “Honour those who’ve Gone Before – Send 2016 to its Grave – and Fight!

  1. davidprosser

    I hope 2017 is the ear of full recovery for you Lisa.May Health, Wealth and Happiness attend you and may people look at the refugee crisis with more heart. Peace in the World would be great and we need more people to work towards it.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  2. olganm

    Thanks, Lisa. Sorry to hear about your personal losses but pleased to hear you’re getting some help. It’s been a hard year indeed. Thanks for sharing and for the encouragement. We’ll make it, together.

  3. wendyunsworth

    I am with you every step of the way, Lisa. 2016 has been a tough year but we must all look forward. You have a wonderful attitude, despite your loss. Let’s all keep fighting, together we will be stronger.

  4. adeleulnais

    A wonderful post, a sad one and a call to arms to fight back and take our power back. So sad for you at the loss of your mother. Glad you are getting help and if you need someone to talk to I’m here. Gone through the loss of parents.

  5. Julia Lund

    I’ m so very sorry for the loss of your mother, Lisa. Such a hard time of change for your family.

    I agree that 2016 seems to have been particularly full of loss, and the evidence of man’s inhumanity to man has been starkly evident. I don’t usually watch the Queen’s speech on Christmas Day, but saw reports of it and caught it online. Ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Individuals showing small acts of kindness. Each life, each soul, matters and collectively the small good we do becomes enormous. We are called to be light and salt in the world, and I know you live that calling with your caring heart and generous spirit. I pray you know peace that passes understanding in the coming days and weeks and months. ❤

    1. Lisa Shambrook Post author

      You are so right, Julia, I hold onto the little things, the beauty of the human spirit I do see every day! I wish the media reported more happiness and compassion, we have to fight the bias and show how much we love! ❤ Your words always uplift me xxx


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