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Friday, January 4, 2013

Mixing Joy with Sorrow

If you were expecting the type of blog I usually post – a choice of subject that would both entertain and            inform -- you will be disappointed. Instead I’d like to share something more personal that has occupied my thoughts this week. Events in my life took an unexpected turn and I’ve been struggling to sort things out.

Originally,  my husband and I looked forward to an occasion that would allow us to spend time away from the farm this weekend. Plans were to drive to Austin to attend a nephew’s wedding on Saturday evening. It will take place in Austin which meant a half-day’s drive and overnight stay. We planned to stay an extra night. That would allow us to spend time with a sister who travels a lot but just happened to be visiting her daughter living in San Antonio.

However on New Year’s Eve I received a phone call from this same sister. She called to say their son-in-law, who had serious medical problems, had died. So…instead of a fun get-together we will be attending his memorial service on Sunday. The possibility exists that I will remain after my husband returns home on Monday.

I’ve been busily completing obligations made for the coming week, just in case. All the while I wonder about the irony of attending a wedding one day and a funeral ceremony the next. It’s not often the stark reality of life and death is so closely entwined. And I’ve been struggling with that reality ever since I got the call.

I’ve lived enough years to have the death of family member or a friend or an acquaintance happen more and more. But this was a young man with a young son and a loving wife. He should have had many more years to live. Although I’m not certain of the age difference between the nephew and my sister’s son-in-law, I would have to say they were probably within ten years difference in ages.

So, while one young man is taking a decisive step into the future, another has ended his lifespan on earth and is now experiencing the next stage of his existence.

Somber thoughts, I agree. I hope you will forgive me for opening my heart in this way.

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