Today I am grateful for the extended family I saw this weekend and the conversations we shared. Some I hadn't seen for many years. We commented that we wish it weren't funerals that tend to bring us together these days, but the key word here is together.
I am especially grateful to have seen my cousin Julie and the rest of her family. Julie and I grew up together, partied together, graduated the same year from neighboring high schools, wrote hilarious letters to each other, and laughed a lot; among other things. And then we saw less and less of each other and fell out of contact in recent years. We have pledged to not let that happen again.
The occasion that brought us together was the celebration of life for Julie's sister Cathy. Cathy died on March 19, a few months shy of her 55th birthday. Too young. Too early.
Lisa, a friend of Cathy's and her husband Kurt, gave a very fitting and heartfelt tribute. She captured the spirit of Cathy and honored the mark she left on those who knew her. Lisa also mentioned that Cathy lived for 19,988 days. There was suffering. No one avoids that. Yet, she lived, loved, and laughed much in those days. That is how she will be remembered and honored.
Am I fully living my days, my hours? I stand a better chance of doing that when I am mindfully present. I am more mindfully present when I am in a state of gratefulness.
It's a good place to start. None of us knows how many days and hours we get. We can only truly know NOW. We can know it richly and deeply.
How are you starting your day, experiencing this moment?