Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Last night, I attended a necrological service.
It was for someone I knew only fleetingly, but I felt a great loss.
I weaved through dozens of bereavement wreaths taller than I was to get to her, and when I finally saw her, she looked so peaceful.
I walked to her husband. He looked like he was on auto-pilot. He was shaking hands, receiving hugs, smiles, and words of sympathy. Then it was my turn. I didn't know what to say. He said, "Hey, you're here, thank you so much for coming." I just mumbled a, "We'll be praying for her," and awkwardly gave him a hug.

I remember when I was on that side of the fence.

You never really feel your loss until you're all alone.
You think plunging into the ocean of your daily activities will be enough to make you forget about your loss for a while, but it doesn't work.
You turn to God and to other people, and you find comfort & strength.
But your loss won't really go away.
It CAN'T go away.
Because nobody can replace anyone else. EVER.
Each person is unique, and this is true for the way that each person touches the life of someone else.
We just have to stop being selfish and accept the loss.
Yes, stop being selfish.

While I was going through the grieving experience not so long ago, I realized that people who grieve GRIEVE FOR THEMSELVES.

EVERYBODY does SOME good in their life. If you think about the one who passed away and how they lived their lives, how they shared themselves with everyone else, how they touched the lives of people around them, you'd realize that they ALL lived a FULL life.
Furthermore, they have completed their predestined assignments. They have accomplished their missions in life. They're done.
Why grieve for them? At work, during an exam, while in line at the doctor's office, do we EVER feel bad for someone who finished ahead of us?
I don't think so.

We grieve for ourselves, we who are left behind, we who find it difficult to cope with the loss, we who can't stand the pain of missing someone whom we will never see again.

But no one REALLY goes away forever. As long as their memories are kept alive in our hearts and minds, the things we learned from them preserved and upheld, the good they have done seen as inspirations to better ourselves, they are made IMMORTAL.

Let us grieve, but not for the ones who have passed on.

They are now in a much better, happier, peaceful place with Someone who loves them even more than we do.

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