Recently, my parent’s best friend, Leslie, passed away from cancer. Shortly before she passed, my mom and I were talking about how her body may be gone, yet her spirit will always be around; how it’s harder for the living to cope with death than it is for those who know they are going to die … maybe because they know that they aren’t truly dying. I don’t know and hope not to for a long while actually. Leslie was definitely at peace with her approaching death, and she planned the most amazingly intimate, heartfelt and fun memorial service. She wanted all to celebrate life and the continuation of her spirit. And she did so by throwing herself a damn good party. Good music, a poem reading, a song sung by her daughter-in-law, reading of cards that loved ones sent her, reciting some of Leslie’s last words she specifically and consciously spoke for this moment, a fantastic slideshow of photographs (many older ones, which were so fun to see! Who doesn’t love an old photo?!), and even my parents and her cousin dancing the Lindy at the end … and this was all part of the memorial service. When she told my mom she had to dance at the memorial service, my mom thought she was kidding (and crazy)! That was no joke … Leslie wanted everyone to be joyous and celebrate, so they danced after shedding a whole lot of tears. There is always happiness behind the sadness …
You all know those little laminated cards they give out at funerals/memorials? Of course you do. When I read Leslie’s, it took me back to my conversation with my mom and to what I truly believe about our spirits. I am not an organized religion follower, however, I am a spiritual person who believes there is something higher and more powerful than our human bodies …
Do not stand at my grave
Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glint on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you wake in the morning hush;
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there. I did not die.
Has someone in your life passed, and shortly after you see a bird at your window that you’ve never seen before? Or you come across a gift they gave you that you’d forgotten you had? These aren’t coincidences. They are signs that their spirit is with you and wants to say hi ;)
Leslie’s son, Chris, sweetly shared that his mom was an angel, and that she’s been on loan for a while. So, now her haloed spirit will be flying all over the place guiding us humans along our path … or maybe simply just to say hi …