I’m writing this to you from the farm in Minnesota where my husband spent his childhood. We’re here to celebrate the life of his mother, who passed away a few days ago. My parents are both still alive and thriving, but the loss of my mother-in-law has hit me hard.
Everyday someone’s parent or loved one dies. We experience it all around us and almost become immune to feeling sorrow because it’s such a normal part of life. Until it’s your parent or loved one who passes on.
Then the world as we know it stops turning. Bits of the last conversations are recalled and tucked away as treasures. There’s a big hole where once there was love and comfort.
We go through the surreal stage where this isn’t really happening. I’ll just wake up tomorrow and call her, tell her how much we love her, and bring her up to date on what’s happening in our world. She’ll be there to listen, to support us and to cheer us on. But this time, she won’t be, or at least not in the same way. There’s an ache in my heart.
It’s only when I go inside that I remember, life and death are but two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without the other. And what is death but to return to the greater source of who we are? With the flip of a coin our physical reality changes. And, just because one can see only one side of the coin at a time, doesn’t mean the other side doesn’t exist.
It’s easiest to understand death when you first understand life. Our time here is finite and life is a precious gift. Each day we have 86,400 seconds to use in any way we’d like. We can’t save the ones we don’t use. We can’t bank them for a rainy day. Money won’t buy more. Use them, or lose them.
When I get quiet and think of how to best use my time, this is what I hear….
Tell those you love that you love them.
Focus on what matters and let go of what doesn’t.
Dream big and live life!
Play full out.
Play and don’t take yourself or the world so seriously.
Laugh with others and at yourself.
Follow your heart, not the voice of your fears.
Love yourself so you can love others.
Be the best friend you can be.
Choose to love with all your heart.
Set high goals and take action daily.
Be generous and give back.
Be healthy and remember to breathe.
Forgive others and yourself.
Live with no regrets.
Connect to the Divine in your own way.
Go deep and know that the answers are within.
You are a part of something so much greater that will live forever.
Spread your wings and fly!
So, I’m taking some time today- some of my 86,400 seconds I’ve been given, and I’m going for a walk. I’m going to take the time to celebrate the life of this loving woman who touched my life, and I’m going to look at my own life with a renewed sense of wonder.
If I get out of the “human-ness” of the situation and listen to my own words, life is indeed a very beautiful place even when sorrow is a part of it. I’m grateful to be here to share it with you.
As time marches on, the one thing that I know for sure….
The only thing we have is time.
How will you use your 86,400 seconds today?