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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Four Funerals and a Wedding!

It has been quite a busy time for my family and I, so much has happened in the past few weeks.  The events have brought with them a multitude of emotions, as well as getting under old scars and wounds that I'd felt were beginning to fully heal.  

I have had several funerals, all involving family members or very close friends, each a poignant reminder of my loss, of how much it hurts, and how much they are going to be missed.  Wakes and funerals still have a sting, still cause me to feel a lump in my throat, I walk in with a strong sense of apprehension; to say it is one of my least favorite activities, would be an understatement.  

In the midst of all this, my daughter was planning her wedding celebration.  A small affair by my family standards, but still an emotional, eventful and joy-filled day.  Very contrasting events, that have an overwhelming way of playing havoc with one's emotions.  Events that both speak of life, love, and ironically, new beginnings.  Both require adjustments, changes, new perspectives, and the courage to step totally out of one's comfort zone.  

Amazingly, our lives are filled with life-changing events, from births to deaths, from weddings to divorces, from having a roof over our head to becoming homeless, from beginning a new job to facing unemployment, from buying your first home to losing it to the bank, and the list can go on and on.  All these events and so many more have profound ways of changing our lives, of changing who we are.  But it is the events and happenings in our lives, that form us, making us who we are, helping us become who we can be.  

The past five years of my life, I have witnessed a dramatic change in me.  I have hopefully changed for the better.  I know I have much more compassion for others, I am more willing to see beyond the surface and recognize the hurt that lies beneath.  I have learned to tilt life and events, and see it from as many angles as possible.  I have embraced my own weakness and in doing so have found unfathomable strength, and have gained the ability to recognize it in others.  My loss and life has taught me so much, my only hope is that I can continue to be a willing pupil.  

Life is not always fair, it definitely follows it's own set of rules, but if we are open, we can learn so much from it.  I recently read a quote that speaks volumes to me, from Testing 101: 'When you are going through something hard and wonder where God is remember the teacher is always quiet during a test.'  For me this quote was reassurance that I am not alone, ever.  That my faith, my beliefs, have helped me cope during life's 'tests' and that somehow I found myself guided through the difficulty.  

We will always be faced with trials, we will always come across challenges, how we cope and where we seek help, determines the length of the journey.  My journey has not diminished, my journey is definitely not complete and probably never will be, but I know that through every up and down, through every dark tunnel, I will somehow find my way, will make it.  I will be able to attend life's happy and sad occasions and recognize the gift in every event.  For my family, the blessing of a wonderful son-in-law, beautiful grandchildren, and the promise of life filled with love and laughter.  For those whose loved ones died, the blessing of the life lived, of the friendships shared, of the memories created and cherished, and the joy of knowing that their lives were filled with love and laughter.

Life is a gift!  A gift to be cherished and cared for, to live each day as if it is the only one that matters, to truly LIVE LIFE remembering to take no-one for granted.  And to hold onto our faith, to cling to hope, and to always remember that no mater what - Love conquers all!

Blessings! and until we meet again.