The whole tone for this past week was set last Sunday night.
I logged on to check Facebook one last time before bed. What I read struck me with the force of a karate chop to the gut. I found out that a childhood friend had died of cancer on Saturday. Lori was only 40 years old, and leaves behind a husband, two children – ages 11 and 8 – her parents, and many friends and connections.
It’s just not right. This thought has replayed through my head so many times over the past six days. News of a death is never welcomed, but it just seems even more unjust when it’s a friend, and when it’s someone in the prime of life. I’ve asked, and internally debated so many questions: “Why Lori? Who will “mother” her children? How is her husband going to cope?” And in broader terms: “What is the meaning of life? What is important to me? How do I achieve my life goals? Do I throw caution to the wind, in case I never make it to senior citizenhood?”
Lori and I go way back to Grade 2. We were in the same class, and that year, a bunch of us girls formed friendships that continue to this day. Many friends in my grade-school circle came from a similar family situation: a working Dad, stay-at-home Mom; several even had our same birth-order pattern: a first-born daughter (me and my girlfriends), and a son three years younger (our brothers all were friends, too).
I’m glad I went to a visitation time at the funeral home. Giving and receiving hugs of support and comfort does everyone a world of good.
To add to my downer state-of-mind, we had a meeting with the lawyer this week to review updated wills. Great. Just raises the spirits enormously – making plans for what you want to happen after your own demise.
And, this is just petty, but the Condo Casa looks like a cyclone has ripped through it.
Really: do I think Lori wished she had spent more time chasing dustbunnies out from under the bed? Scouring the kitchen sink? Friends, social connections – that is where to place priority. I bet Lori is really happy for all the family vacations, parties, mundane daily routines that she did participate in.
God has a way of taking care of us. As things worked out, I got to spend a lot of time with friends and family this past week. These positive interactions ensured that each day had a bright spot to it. Here’s the recap:
[I really enjoyed "visiting through comment sharing" on Wednesday's blog post, too!]
[Cousin Kate had happy news to share - another positive].
Friday I worked a full day at the store. I love my job, and spending time at work buoyed my spirits. Being around people in general makes me happy.
Later this aft, I am meeting my friend Cathie at Starbucks. It is going to be a delightful visit.
You know what? This week ahead is going to have its own challenges. But I am squaring my shoulders and I’m ready to face each day.
What were you grateful for this past week? Every one of us encounters difficult situations – such is life. It’s important to acknowledge hard times, and to be in touch with our sad/down feelings. But, it’s also imperative that we remain optimistic, and appreciate the positives that occur each day, too.