Death Follows Life

The day which we fear as our last is but the birthday of eternity. ~Seneca, Roman philosopher

The dreary gray days of winter always seem to bring a flood of deaths.

Obituaries crowd the pages of our daily newspaper. Local funeral homes bulge with mourners paying their respects to the dying and doing what they can to comfort the left-behind family. Endless processions snake their way through town en route to one of the cemeteries.

None of us wants to think about dying, but let’s be realistic. We don’t get out of here alive. And before we go, chances are we’ll have to attend a wake or two. So what’s proper to say at a visitation to those who are grieving … and what’s not?

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It’s Called Scareware

From the errors of others, a wise man corrects his own. ~Syrus, Roman writer

Earlier this week, I was listening to music and reading blogs when suddenly on my computer screen four popups appeared warning me that Microsoft had detected hackers breaching my firewall and trying to hijack my machine.

I know what you’re thinking — ignore them. But a voice was reading the warnings — over and over — and I couldn’t “X” out of the ads. My heart started racing, and logic flew out the window.

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Ministering Angel

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. ~Khalil Gibran, artist, poet, writer

I’ve watched you from afar
Leading your mother into church,
Folding her walker, setting it aside,
Then making sure she has a hymnal.

I’ve watched you from afar
And marveled at your inner strength,
And admired your patience and kindness
To the one who gave you of herself first.

I’ve watched you from afar
And wondered whether you ever get tired
Or bored or angry or sad or frustrated
At caring for an elderly woman with health issues.

I’ve watched you from afar,
Contemplating whether you still laugh and enjoy life.
Get together with friends, hoist a tall cold one,
Or merely exist, dreading each new day.

I’ve watched you from afar
And pondered how the caregiving role fell to you.
Whether you’re the only one or the best one
And whether you chose it or were selected.

I’ve watched you from afar
And asked myself if I could one day do what you do.
Or if it’s easier to shuttle our elderly off to facilities
Where professionals can provide “better” care for them.

I’ve watched you from afar
And whispered a prayer for your blessing.
God surely must have something special in mind
For someone who gives so much of themselves!

Note: This is basically a true account. In a church I used to attend, there was one “ministering angel” who regularly assisted her elderly parent, causing me to do a lot of wondering!