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As Erin and I chatted, she sipped her coffee from a mug her daughter gave her, which reads, "Gandhi—be the change you want to see in the world."
According to Brockovich, the big difference between Ed Masry and his partner Jim Vititoe and the majority of lawyers is that they, according to Brockovich, "saw outside of the box."
"A lot of lawyers get stuck within the confines of the law," said Brockovich. "The best lawyers see beyond the law. They can see a human aspect to it, and you have to see beyond the games that a big corporation and their experts will play."
With Masry and Brockovich working as a team, they discovered that nothing could stand in their way. However, before Hinkley case, life for Brockovich was rough.
"They left a couple of things out of the movie," explained Brockovich. "I had a really sick kid; and with only enough money for the essential groceries, there was nothing left for cough medicine. So, it was one of those little scenes where it's like, 'Oops, the cough medicine ended up in my bag.'"
"That is deplorable, I know," Brockovich said. "Sometimes out of desperation, things like that happen to people; and it's sad. During that time in my life, I felt very destitute."
When Brockovich began working on the Hinkley case, she was teeny-tiny. "I was a size 2 because I would not eat. All I ever had in the cupboards were mac and cheese and two hot dogs, which were gonna go to the kids," Brockovich stated. "Sometimes we have to make self-sacrifices in order to make things work."
According to Brockovich, fear is the driving force that keeps human beings from progressing. When Ed Masry passed away in December 2005, Brockovich felt a wide range of emotions, including fear.
"The problem with being fear-based is that you can be dominated and led to believe anything," explained Brockovich. "That is why I always keep the faith that things will work out. You have to believe that."
Since the death of her partner in crime, Brockovich said, "I had to rediscover some of my inner strengths that I was not paying close attention to," she sighed deeply, "because there was Ed."
"Ed and I had a unique dynamic, where we were almost in competition with each other," Brockovich laughingly said. "We were the perfect representation of the lady of justice—the scales of justice tipping one way. When Ed was up, I would not be so certain; and as I was coming up, he would tip and be not so certain. It became a constant balancing of the scales. I don't really have that with anyone anymore."
"Ever since Ed died, there has been a massive energy shift for me; and I see a change," said Brockovich.
During Masry's final days, Brockovich recalled his wife, Joette, on one side of the bed; and she and Ed's son, Louis Masry, were on the other side.
"The three of us stood there until he took his last breath, and it was peaceful," recalled Brockovich. "You know, I've always anticipated the death of my own father, who is now 85 years old, which is why I thought I would be prepared for Ed's death; but I cannot even put into words the pain I felt in my heart."
"I believe that our soul exists right there in the heart," Brockovich continued. "When Ed died, it went into my heart; and it hurt. I could not believe the pain I was feeling. Listen, this is not some Shirley MacLaine, dee-dee-dee-dee story. That man moved right through me."
"He went somewhere, and I felt uplifted," said Brockovich. "I could hear the monitor go, beeeeeeeeeeep; and at that moment, I thought, 'You know something that I don't.'"
"Where did you go?" Brockovich pondered.
After Masry's funeral, Brockovich realized that death no longer frightened her, as it had in the past. She continuously reiterated that she definitely does not have all the answers, nor does she pretend to. However, when Brockovich described herself, she said, "I'm like that feather at the end of the movie Forrest Gump. I'm floating along; and wherever it is that I'm supposed to be, I'm going to end up there."
"I know we all have ideas of religion, and I certainly don't know what is right or wrong in that regards; however, what I do know is that when Ed passed, the energy changed gears," explained Brockovich. "It's real. It moved through me, and I did not know that I was capable of experiencing such heartfelt sorrow. And I will miss him, but I must carry on."
Like a feather, Erin Brockovich will continue floating towards her fate, including the big case against Beverly Hills High School that she and Masry were preparing together, which is set to go to trial in the next few months.
Check out LawCrossing next week for the inside scoop on what may be her biggest trial yet.
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