I’ve been thinking a good bit about death lately.
Of course we’re all GOING to die….I don’t know anyone who ultimately won’t or hasn’t. Certainly there are folks who work ardently in defying it….working to look young, stay healthy….all that. Well, I certainly have a measure of vanity and would prefer being a good looking old bat, healthy, able, but moreso, I hope to have achieved a measure of my potential before traveling on…..but clearly that is my ego speaking…..my desire to create so many things…..as if I were in control. Funny that! Nevertheless, wasted talent to me is a disappointment, for sure.
I’ve lost some people very close to me….my mother…..my father. We all expect that our parents will die before us and frankly, I always worried when taking physical or safety risks that had I died before my mom, THAT would have killed her, certainly broken her heart which would have broken mine.
I realize with this thought, that the death of a loved one becomes so much about those of us still living, narcissistic, perhaps, but where I certainly have and do gravitate, the idea of living without them seeming unbearable. But, I’ve learned it IS bearable, in time.’
I’m not a parent, but I CAN grok that bond. But, my mother died first and despite the initial blow and the grief process that followed for some time, I worked through it and have her with me (sounds so hokey), in spirit. I get it. I do.
In fact, I was celebrating the good work of two key employees, serving them with a yummy dinner and wine at my house last evening, a treat for me. Memories of my mother Kitty came up. They wanted to hear stories. There were many and we laughed uncontrollably at some of her hysterical antics.
(Everything was a grand adventure to her. We wouldn’t just have apples as a snack, it was always, ‘an apple party!!! Get your party hats!’ I loved that about her, she a woman who experienced untold adversity in her 74 years)!
So, our roasting oven on four wheels….these were the days when we had service attendants raising the hoods or our cars to check the oil. When our unsuspecting attendant lifted ‘Kitty’s’ hood, with his eyebrows high on his head, the smell of a seasoned roast wafting through his olfactory membranes, with her broad and characteristic smile, Kitty beamed, ‘care to join us for lunch?’
Good heavens, the love I had…have for her is clearly, unmeasurable and certainly thicker than molasses and as dark as tar! Deep! And once you have loved deeply, there is no other way.
My two work team players drank ‘after dinner coffee’ in Kitty’s fine china and spooned homemade frozen yogurt from her rose painted dessert bowls. She is with me everywhere, mostly her heart, seeing me through the tough times, rallying my wins, always hoping I’ll find love in ways she didn’t. I feel her smile and her ‘back’, her fortitude and her energetic presence whenever I tune in, as she is never far. I had and have no better champion. Experiencing this sort of love can buoy a soul in magical ways.
And, I am a grateful daughter, reminding me, that it is the challenging twists and turns and how we surf, lob, traverse or bob through and around them, that determines the profundity, the power of our relationships with others. I appreciate that. Adversity can serve us deeply if we stay aware.
We don’t need many ‘rocking chair’ friends, the ones who will be with us in spirit or in the flesh throughout our entire life, some still alive though who we don’t see in the flesh as often as we might prefer, but the few I might count on one hand, oooooh, they are like the right seasoning on a roast…..be it cooked in an oven or on the manifold of a 1960’s station wagon!