Sunday, May 30, 2004

In Memoriam

We take it for granted, this life we live and all the people in it. We say we don't, or we won't, but it's human nature. At night when we go to bed we fully expect our worlds to be the same when we wake up, for all the people we hold dear to still inhabit it, for the person sleeping next to us to be there still, for the day to go on as planned, for life to go on. People die, though, and sometimes much too young. Three years ago at just about this time of day I sat in a hospital room with my hands on my stepmother -- I had staked out a piece of her left leg. My two stepsisters, stepbrother, father, and her sister all were there, each with his or her own piece of body, each holding on and letting go simultaneously. She had been just a few days in a coma, and this day her breathing was starting to rattle, her lungs filling with fluid. She died at precisely the instant that the sun set behind the tall buildings on Mission Hill. It was a beautiful sunset, and I give her full credit for it still.

Today we had the girls baptised, so now it's a day for remembering birth and death, coming out and going in, water and fire. I'm guilty much of the time of taking my life, my family, my incredible gifts for granted.

Kiss your people tonight before you go to bed and thank God or the universe or whomever you choose, but give thanks for them. Life is short, and precious.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A beautiful sentiment. Thanks for the reminder.

Blessings to you and your family.