My husband and I were driving home last week from a friend's mom's funeral. He asked me what I thought about life after death, where we go when we die and what exactly I believe in. He himself is petrified of dying, I on the other hand find comfort in the idea that there is life after death. That life on earth is only the beginning of the true test of it all. I think when you get up there it's a world of reconnecting with loved ones, meeting for tea so to speak. I don't look forward to dying and am thankful for this life on earth everyday, however I love that I have a little comfort and hope that the end may not really be an end.
Our family lost a member this week to car accident. 2 weeks after a friend lost his mom. A week after the anniversary of the death of my cousin last year, and a week before the anniversary of the death of friend last year, my emotions, exhausted. I was going to blog about how crazy life can be, how overwhelming life with a threenager has been, and how exhausting it is picking up toys off the floor day in and day out all the while thinking about what to have for dinner... when my mind was stopped in it's tracks. How can I possibly complain at a time like this.
In relation to those I have lost this week and last year at this time, all I can think about is the mother/daughter/sister relationship.
I didn't know J that well, but after sitting through her funeral and listening to one of the most touching and tragic eulogies made by her son, our good friend, I can say I got a very good idea of what a beautiful and thoughtful person she really was. At the wake, I cried at the sight of old pictures. She was gorgeous, and her husband truly loved and respected her entirely. But it was the pictures of her and her grandbabies and the pure sadness in her daughter's eyes that really resonated with me. I couldn't relate to her daughters sorrow, but I could imagine the emptiness she would be feeling and couldn't imagine being in her shoes. I literally hugged her and said "I have no words, I'm not even sure I can say anything without..." and I started to cry.
My cousin R was such a beautiful person. People truly were inspired to be more like her. Taken way too early I remember at the time my heart ached for her only sister. She had brothers, but I could relate with the sisterly bond and couldn't imagine what I would be like if something happened to my sister. I am so happy to have had two beautiful little girls who I hope will mimic what my sister and I have. I remember thinking how wonderful it would be to have a little boy for my husband, but how perfect it would be if our 2nd was a sister for B. It's a bond I can't explain.
A week today, I lost a friend to a winter crash. She was also an inspiration and had a special bond with her sisters and mom. I remember at her funeral being terribly sad for them knowing how devastating it must be. It was my last day of work before leaving my class for maternity leave. I had just mailed a package that morning to her in the board internal mail not knowing that that package would never make it to her. A colleague of mine came through my classroom door at the end of the day and started talking.... I'll never forget, 8 month pregnant, I was awkward to hug, but she did anyway. She told me the news and I crumbled. A friend. A sister. A daughter. lost.
This week I learned of the death of another family member. Another beautiful woman with 4 children and 5 gorgeous grandchildren. I read her sons post over and over again not wanting to believe what I was reading. This morning, her daughters posted their reflections... and I wept.
K said: "How do you navigate tragedy when the person you would turn to for help is the one you lost? Yesterday we lost my mom in a traffic accident. You think you have so much time, but you don't. You are gone far too soon, mom and I don't know how to do this without you."
There are moments here and there that stop you dead in your tracks. You've got your nose down trekking through life and suddenly something makes you look up and soak in your surroundings. I don't wish for more of these moments, but when they come, I am thankful for their message. I can't tell you the number of times my girls eyes have met mine these last few days that I haven't just stopped in the moment, hugged them and told them I loved them. I want to wrap our lives, our bonds and our love up in bubble wrap. But I know that life goes on, you have to live it to it's fullest, love hard and be happy. People come and go in and out of our lives, we have to accept God's decisions, remember people's impact and carry inspiration from special people in our souls. I count my blessings day in and day out, because after all, life is way too fast, too short and too crazy to not be thankful it's even here at all.