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In Memory

I hope everyone who got to celebrate it had a wonderful Memorial Day.



The three of us started at Leenie's Cafe, a restaurant that does New Orleans Specialties, including a "chocolate beignet" that was a beignet with melted bittersweet chocolate squirted on top. I haven't asked them if they're displaced from New Orleans, and I probably should.

After that the three of us scattered: I helped with a garden consultation, John went off to work on a house (sealing tile and caulking the edges), and Jet went to a friend's house to play all day. The consultation was with a long time friend who's also a cancer survivor, and we had a lot of fun just wandering through her yard and talking about what she could or should do with various patches of it. We had their little dog with us, and he just wanted affection whenever we stopped to talk.

It was a beautiful morning, sunny, warm, and dry. I went home, watered my tomato plants. I should get them into the ground, but we'd had our last ice fall just a bit more than a week ago... and I wasn't feeling quite safe enough. *laughs* And John wants to get more compost into the ground. We've had thunderstorms every afternoon and evening since the last snowfall, and the compost is breaking down quickly with the damp.

When I got home, I napped, and woke up when John came home. The two of us then went out to McIntosh Lake trail. It's a three mile trail around Lake McIntosh. There were thunderstorms over Long's Peak, and the wind was blowing so hard that the lake had waves going across it, small as it is. Earlier I'd been worried that it would be too sunny! But it was cool and breezy as we went around the lake.

When George died, all four sons got some of the ashes to take with them wherever they wished. We'd put some of ours by one of the benches here on the lake, a favorite resting spot on the north side of the lake. We were about three-quarters of the way around when we finally got the bench, and droplets of water were sprinkling us from the waves breaking on the eastern shore. We sat down, far closer to the water than we normally are, as the lake level was really, really high today with all the spring run off. We sat for a while and remembered George and many of the others we've lost.

As I get older, I get more familiar with death and the loss of those we love. It's never comfortable, but the losses are more familiar. More... acceptable? Not entirely sure if that's the right word, but sometimes it feels like it's just a part of living and life, now. Not something terrible that should have been avoided at all cost. Sometimes it's better to let go well than to cling with desperation or at any cost, because sometimes the costs really are too much.

Anyway, it was a good way to remember. We walked the rest of the way back around to the car. We got a little bit sprinkled on, but no deluge. When we got home, I go Jet from his friend's house, and by the time we got home again, it had cleared up enough to swim! Sunny but not too warm, it was definitely spring weather and not full summer, yet. We enjoyed the pool, a nice grilled dinner, and then a trip to the local TCBY, where they had Tahitian Taro flavored frozen yogurt. I'm looking forward to the Japanese black sesame next month. *grins* I think George would have liked them.

For myself, its that sometimes life gives you two options, "bad" and "worse," and delaying in hopes that a miracle will happen can increase the suffering involved without changing the outcome. And once you've gone through that, hopefully it makes it easier to recognize when that situation comes again. We're fortunate in the affluent countries that those kind of choices aren't a regular part of our lives, something that can be easy to take for granted.

At some point, we have to let go of those we love and go on living, until it is time to join them all in whatever comes after. As David said in Samuel 2:12, "Now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me." I think its a misinterpretation to take that as meaning that we shouldn't mourn and grieve, just that its a process and that we can't live in that state in the long term. Some can't get past that, sadly, and die of their broken heart. That happened to one of my uncles after his wife died; you could just see the light had left his life, and it never came back.
Yes to all of that.

I'm really grateful, in many ways, that Jet got to witness George's dying in a lot of ways. To have the experience that young to bring forward to other situations. I didn't really have that as a child, just more and more now.

I love your interpretation of the verse, and the personal note that goes with it. Thank you.