Grief Is Like An Ocean Image from the Web

Grief Is Like An Ocean
Image from the Web

We said goodbye to an incredibly special man last week, a man who I have been proud to call “Dad” for over 30 years.  He was a man who accepted me into the family without question and with a smile and open arms.  I think my own dad felt a little better knowing that when I was miles away from him, he could count that there was someone else who I could turn to.

My father in law suffered a stroke nine years ago. Even though he was no longer able to do all the things he had before, the importance of family never faltered. We realized how fragile life really is and how quickly things can change.

We were fortunate to be able to visit him and enjoy each other’s company the afternoon before he passed. At the time nothing seemed any different. We joked and visited. Knowing the comfort that church gave him I even attended service with him and mom. We all bid farewell promising to return later in the week.

The following morning everything changed. It wasn’t completely unexpected but it was still a surprise. A big one.

Later that evening as we hugged and cried and shared our grief in our own ways, my daughter put it in perspective for me.

She said that she was glad she went to see her Grandpa as often as she had. She’d made each time special just in case it would be the last time.

And as I look back that’s exactly what she did. There are no regrets, no hugs not given, I love yous not said.

And that my friends is how we should treat every encounter we have every day. Not because we are dwelling on the possibility for sadness or loss, but because we honour and are grateful for every experience we have, every special person in our lives.

We owe it to ourselves and everyone else. Seize the moment. Seize the day. Just don’t delay. Tell the people in your lives how you feel about them. Do it now.

No regrets.

The “After” of Happily Ever…

No longer a person in his place,
Yet it is far from empty.
Love and memories fill this space,
For breaking hearts a remedy.

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There are many ways we can remember those we’ve lost.  Bonnie, From Memory Bears by Bonnie, creates beautiful stuffed bears out of favourite pieces of clothing from loved ones.   A keepsake to hold and hug no matter what your age. The idea touched my heart so I’m sharing a link to her blog for others who may decide this is a perfect way to remember and bring comfort to those who remain.

If you have found other unique and comforting ways to remember loved ones please share and I’ll be happy to add any links.

©2014 Rise Like Air  J. Fries

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