All of life is about growth and change. When the change is the loss of a loved one, it can cause grief and turmoil. But death can also be a reminder of just how precious life is.
A friend of mine made her transition recently and after the initial shock, I began reflecting on my own life and how I wanted to spend the time I have left. What is it that I must finish? What do I need to start? How and with whom do I intend to spend the months or years ahead?
As has happened before, I was assigned to lay out the memorial program and get it printed. I began collecting photographs and went in search of material I could use to compose her obituary. Some information wasn’t easy to find, and I ended up digging through old files and boxes until I’d found what I needed. In the process, a corner of my storage room was emptied.
The act of clearing out things made me feel lighter. There was more space and I couldn’t help but think that it symbolized making room for something new to come in. It also made me feel better knowing I would leave a little less clutter for someone else to have to go through when it’s time for my death.
Thinking about my death is something I don’t often do. Like many people, I avoid it as if the very thought somehow brings it closer. But sitting with the raw emotions from my friend’s death, I can’t help but be reminded to enjoy life more fully.
Making preparations for her service kept me busy so I have not yet been able to fully process my feelings. For now, I can say that while she was here, my friend showered everyone she encountered with love and light. With her passing, she leaves us with many wonderful memories. Her service brought many old friends together again and the experience was rich. Although her physical presence will be missed, her gifts of laughter and clarity remain.
Everything in this world is temporary, except love. My friend loved her children, her family, and her friends well. I know she will continue to spread light and love wherever her spirit goes. Good travels, my friend.