It is now 43 days into the New Year and 36 days since my last post. Whoa! That’s way too long. While I am disappointed that I started the New Year with fewer posts, I am still very much committed to my blog and refuse to give up.
Today I attended a family member’s funeral. The basis of our gathering was somber, however, the positive energy and enthusiasm that brought the family together was refreshing. I was delighted that the difference of opinions, attitudes, ages, values, and beliefs that typically cause anxiety and squabbles during family gatherings such as weddings and funerals, did not permeate today’s gathering.
I united with family members, some of whom I haven’t seen in ten years or more. My son made acquaintance with cousins, young and old. It was so cool watching the kids little faces light up with surprise and amazement at meeting new relatives. The adults greeted one another with gigantic smiles; breathing taking hugs, and lipstick stained kisses, all genuine with sincere warmth. I enjoyed partaking in the event, as well as, witnessing the affection and love tossed about the room.
Reflecting on the days events, I cannot help but wonder how is it that throughout the year we’re all busy with our own individual lives and cannot squeeze the time in for a phone call, a card, an email, or a visit, but when someone dies, we stop everything to pay our respects and to say farewell to our loved one. We often take off from work and school; find baby sitters that previously didn’t exist, and find ways to travel hundreds and thousands of miles across waterways and roadways. Any previously scheduled events or appointments manage to take a back seat and the world continues to revolve.
“Why do we have to wait until someone dies, for us to get together?” is a heartfelt sentiment that many of us have either spoken or heard at funerals. And yes, I also heard the words muttered today. We rhetorically ask the question, know the answer, but don’t usually change our behavior- we simply continue to mundanely ask the question.
Three years ago after the passing of a very dear cousin, I committed to reach out to distant love ones more often. And while, I’ve partially followed through with my commitment, I need to re-commit to follow through even more often. We’ve all said it- over and over again, but do not take any course of action to change it? Most often not, but I’m going to work harder at it month by month in 2011.
What family member or friend have you not seen in a while? Whom have you thought about recently? Take a moment right now and do something about it. Make yourself a note and take some kind of action to reach out to them. Texts, facebook, email, or make the call. If you don’t have his or her contact information, reach out to someone who does… As the Pastor suggested today, we don’t get advance notice that our number is up, it just happens. Reach out today while you still can.