My ancestor Dorothea Erdmuth von Zinzendorf died at the age of 56. She had shortly before lost her 24 year old son Christian after before losing 5 children all in infancy. Now her daughter Benigna was the only child left. Her husband had been travelling on different mission trips for many years without much communication being possible back then when you lived apart.
She must have felt deeply lonely and grieving, the “Mother” of the Moravian church. A biography describes how she just “gave up”, exhausted and died.
I am 56 now, and I just lost my marriage of 24 years. I feel a deep connection with my ancestor, my great-grandmother. She founded the Moravian church with her husband in 1722, exactly 300 years ago.
As I am breathing deeply through my pain, and with the help of therapy, yoga, meditation, my daughters and my communities have found new joy and strength to move forward, I am thinking of her. This blog, this year, my new beginning is dedicated to my ancestor, this amazingly strong, pious, lonely and in the end despairing and fading (letting go) woman.
I know she is smiling at me, as I am starting my new life at 56. I will live on with joy and strength, also for you, my beloved namesake.