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I recently contemplated the delicate balance of life and human relationships.

An elderly relative passed away after years of loneliness from losing a spouse, falling into unhealthy habits and an unpleasant lifestyle.

Those of us who were able to travel for the funeral benefited from reconnecting with each other and catching up with old friends in the town of our birth. The occasion gave a sobering twist to Halloween and All Souls Day.

It was a long journey for a short visit. The surrounding events provided opportunities to hear stories from others who knew your relative for years or recently formed friendships through shared interests.The sombre experience reminds you to enjoy times with those beings you love and cherish despite their shortcomings.

You venture into the new version of the church you once attended a lifetime ago, the religion you abandoned due to differences of opinion. You reach into the crevices of your memory for that sense of community and shared values. You notice they transported the large crucifix from the old church, the one with the bleeding savior you could not look at as a child. You find the strength and spirit to join in song, to celebrate a life and provide a smooth, harmonious send-off to the next dimension.

You contemplate how we should treat our deceased with respect and dignity. Without getting too elaborate, I feel it’s important to plan ahead for your own funeral, to make decisions for your mortal remains, to lessen stress on loved-ones, and put your house in order.

Although emotionally and physically drained, you enjoy companionship on short, refreshing strolls about town and down memory lane.


Shuffling through the fallen leaves, you visit the streets, the town park and the library where you recall misadventures and fond memories plus learn to enjoy new experiences. You let yourself laugh, share updates and hopes for your children. You dream of a future with the grandchildren who have entered your life and nestled into your heart.

As you contemplate the next decade of your independent life, you are determined to continue with those small changes to improve your health, to reconsider compromise and expectations. You tolerate the brief interruptions and annoyances, knowing that they too shall pass.

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Breathing in. Breathing out.  Repeating as necessary.

Thanks for dropping by.