Friday, March 13, 2009

Saying Goodbye

Today in Panama, my wife, Melva, and her family say goodbye to her sister, Lila Julieta Marquinez, who died on 10 March 2009. May she rest in peace.

When you appeared in this world, you cried, and all the people around you rejoiced. You have to live your life in such a way that when you leave this world, you will rejoice, and all the people around you will cry. (Indian Wisdom in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 12 March)

Here's something Alexandra Stoddard wrote about death.
... Death is a door we all enter, a bridge we cross, a boat we sail.

In life we're thrown together, in families, in friendships, through our work and circumstances, where we live and where we study. The death of a family member or loved one brings to light the relationship you shared. We grieve because we care. When someone we love dies, we are acutely aware of how important that person is in our lives. Death is concrete, final, and silent. We can no longer carry on a conversation the way we were able to when our loved one was alive.

Feeling the pain of loss when someone close to us dies is natural, normal, healthy and balanced. We feel sorrow, distress, and perhaps misfortune. It is not up to us to ask why, but to accept death, grieve, and move on. There is no need to feel regret. Death teaches us to do what we can, when we can, and then let go. There are stages in recovery from the death of a loved one. Everyone takes time to adjust to death, and being able to express your sadness and pain is the sign of an emotionally balanced person.
(Alexandra Stoddard, The Art of the Possible, p. 157-58)

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