In the Absence of Friends and Loved Ones

December 20, 2012

“And this is what we mean by friends.  Even when they are absent, they are with us . . . even when they are weak, they are strong; and even when they are dead, they are alive.”
— Cicero

A light in the darkness -- the Macy star and Westlake tree, Seattle

A light in the darkness — the Macy’s star and Westlake tree, Seattle

“Listen to me: everything you think you know, every relationship you’ve ever taken for granted, every plan or possibility you’ve ever hatched, every conceit or endeavor you’ve ever concocted, can be stripped from you in an instant.  Sooner or later, it will happen.  So prepare yourself.  Be ready not to be ready.  Be ready to be brought to your knees and beaten to dust.  Because no stable foundation, no act of will, no force of cautious habit will save you from this fact:  nothing is indestructible.”
— Jonathan Evison, from The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving

Today’s post is in memory of Alden, my daughter’s best friend, who died one year ago.  Sometimes it is difficult to find the strength to stay open to the joys of the season.  I am privileged to witness my daughter’s courage in this regard.  My heartfelt best wishes to everyone who is suffering the absence of beloved friends and family this holiday season.

” . . . simply living demands all the courage that we have.”
— Adam Gopnik, from Winter: Five Windows on the Season

3 Responses to “In the Absence of Friends and Loved Ones”

  1. Martha Says:

    Thank you, Rosemary. This point is so important and this piece so well crafted by you. This post means a lot to me. I don’t know why, but it seems to take courage for people to say this, write this, read this and accept this. But they will at some time live this.

  2. Chris Says:

    To lose a loved one is the hardest thing in the world to bear…to lose a loved one so young is even more heart wrenching and at this time of the year?? There are no words for it…My condolences to you and your daughter…May you find some of that light right now…

  3. Yes, it is true. Life can change in an instant. I had the rug pulled out from under me, and it was God that stood me up, and helped me walk again. I pray for comfort and understanding for those who mourn the loss of a loved one this Christmas season.

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