Friday, May 11, 2012

Nothing can take love from you... ever!

This little darling sums up my friend
perfectly -- blonde, young at heart,
a ballet dancer, and a pinkaholic! 
The person who has known me longest (other than my own family, all of whom are gone) just passed this week.  It was sudden and unexpected, and has given me a great deal to think about -- for some reason, more so than when other loved ones have moved on.  Perhaps this is because of her exuberant and indomitable expression of life.  To be honest, it doesn't feel like she's gone anywhere!

I started thinking about the fundamental reason that death is so difficult for humans to bear.  It occurred to me that perhaps it is in great part because we feel that love has been taken from us, never to return.  The situation seems so final, so hopeless -- especially since we are unable to do anything about it in the way of bringing back the loved one lost.  Here in the U.S. we've always been known for our can-do spirit and fundamental belief in the victory of good over evil.  Our true heroes always win.... in the long run.  So even if things look bleak and messy and impossible for a time, we still expect that everything will be nicely sorted out in the long run.  And so when a dear one passes it is tempting to feel downright helpless, if not fatalistic.

But the good news is that the love itself is never lost.  All the joy and beauty we shared with our loved one stays with us and is at our disposal to take out and cherish whenever we feel the desire.  When a friend or family member is out of the country, or at the office, or in the next room, we do not burst into tears because they are gone.  We know that even though they are not in our physical presence they still care about us and know we care about them.  And that affection does not change or diminish just because someone goes out of our sight.  And so I am going to go on loving and thinking about my friend, just as I would if she was going about her usual business... and just as I do about dear friends that I have not managed to stay in contact with as I should.

The bottom line is we are loved.  And nothing can make us feel otherwise, unless we choose to let it.  And I, for one, choose to side with love and joy, both here and hereafter.

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