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Constance Carole Milbourne
November 21, 1961 ~ January 20, 2023 (age 61) 61 Years Old
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Our dear friend and colleague Connie passed away on Friday January 20, 2023. All who knew her were witness to her incredible compassion and penchant for saying YES. Through her adult life she was devoted to her family. She arranged care giving for her parents, she did so much for her brother in his times of need and went to extremes in caring for her husband. She gave her life in support of her family.
Connie's education accomplishments include a PhD in Communications from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, MA and BA in Journalist, Advertising and Public Relations from the University of Central Florida. She loved teaching, loved the interaction with students and loved Chinese food, both in the US and in China where she taught for several years. Besides living and working in China, Connie was most recently a professor at the Rhode Island College in Providence, RI. Prior to that role, she was a professor at Indiana University Northwest. Before academia, she worked for the big Chicago advertising firms and thrived.
She leaves behind her husband Robert Carroll and her brother Stanley (Lee) Milbourne, Jr.
Connie posted the following thoughts recently which tells us how she was feeling, quoting from Naomi Holdt - Psychologist and Speaker.
A gentle reminder about why you are utterly exhausted...
No one I know began this year on a full tank. Given the vicious onslaught of the previous two years (let's just call it what it was) most of us dragged ourselves across the finish line of 2021... frazzled, spent, running on aged adrenaline fumes...
We crawled into 2022 still carrying shock, trauma, grief, heaviness, disbelief... The memories of a surreal existence...
And then it began... The fastest hurricane year we could ever have imagined. Whether we have consciously processed it or not, this has been a year of more pressure, more stress, and a race to "catch up" in all departments... Every. Single. One. Work, school, sports, relationships, life...
Though not intentionally aware, perhaps hopeful that the busier we are, the more readily we will forget... the more easily we will undo the emotional tangle... the more permanently we will wipe away the scarring wounds...
And attempts to re-create some semblance of "normal" on steroids while disregarding that for almost two years our sympathetic nervous systems were on full alert, has left our collective mental health in tatters. Our children and teens are not exempt. The natural byproduct of fighting a hurricane is complete and utter exhaustion...
So before you begin questioning the absolutely depleted and wrung-dry state you are in- Pause. Breathe. Remind yourself of who you are and what you have endured. And then remind yourself of what you have overcome.
Despite it all, you're still going. (Even on the days you stumble and find yourself face down in a pile of dirt).
Understanding brings compassion...
Most of the world's citizens are in need of a little extra TLC at the moment. Most are donning invisible "Handle with care" posters around their necks and "Fragile" tattoos on their bodies...
Instead of racing to the finish line of this year, tread gently. Go slowly.
Amidst the chaos, find small pockets of silence. Find compassion. Allow the healing. And most of all... Be kind. There's no human being on earth who couldn't use just a little bit more of the healing salve of kindness.