The Last Time

You never know when it will be the last time to see someone. Life is funny that way. One day you are a part of someone’s life and then, overnight, you are not. The goodbye,was a farewell in this lifetime. 

It is very sad when it is someone you love and care about. And yet, none of us control others, none of us get to say when good bye is said. I am not sure if it sadder when it is due to death or by someone else’s choice. Knowing someone you care about is out there but you aren't seeing them, sharing in their laughter, can be gut-wrenching.

I suppose it is true that we all have our crosses to bear. It is not possible that we get to choose what those are.  We are simply called to accept God’s plan, even if it does mean we will endure pain. Somehow our faith in that should ease our grief.

If that last encounter was a kiss, an embrace, ah, that should warm the heart more. But for many, it simply makes the grief even more real, even more hurtful.  Loving someone, anyone, friend, family or child and no longer being an active part of their life is hurtful. For many, it is as if they must go on with life while a piece of their heart has been chiseled out and can’t be replaced by anyone.

Tears can flow, holidays roll by, but the love of another human being, unconditional love, doesn't go away.  If someone you have helped nurture and/or fostered a close loving relationship with no longer sees you, at some level, it must register that they too, deep inside their soul, miss you too.  That memory, that connection you had, is something the heart, the subconscious does not forget.

But it is hard to walk away with and move forward without having those days when, out of the corner of your eye, you feel a tear begin to slip down the side of your face. The next thing you know, there is a thunderstorm inside you that bursts open and the cry is more than just a thought a tissue can quickly clear away.  It is something, call it a Kodak moment, that can't be erased. And you don't want it gone.   

It is amazing how resilient we are, to be able to endure the pain of a loss of someone dear to us and still find the strength to go on with our lives.  We must and accept life is certainly about change. Acceptance of life with other people’s conditions on yours can be challenging . But reality is life is painful.  Life is not always happy endings. We can’t control what others think or do and what they act on.  We can only control ourselves. That alone we have to use to create our own sense of peace.

God is there. Through the loss, the tears, when the 'missing' becomes overpowering, God is holding your hand assuring you that you are not forgotten. He lets us know your shared memories mattered, that it was not all for not.  He feels the pain and cries along with us at our hurt. 

If you are hurting and have lost someone you love, the ability to be an active part of their life, know that you are not alone. If the last occasion was voices raised in anger, know that anger does subside over time. Eventually your shared moments will surface. You may be long gone but those memories, those times together, cannot be erased. That someone will miss you and so will others connected with that person that are no longer a part of your world. 

Raise your head after you weep and know God is crying too.  May you be graced enough that your last encounter was holding that person close, perhaps in your arms.  May the last words you uttered have been an endearment saying I love you and will miss you. And know, without a shadow of a doubt, its better to have loved, nurtured and cared for someone dearly than to have missed the opportunity to have impacted someone’s life. And, for you, the one with the heavy heart, far better that your special someone got the chance to deeply touch yours.

Missing your little face,
And your sweet embrace,
The sound of your giggle,
When you start to wiggle.

Knowing as you grow,
The memories may start to go.
And praying as they do,
You'll feel I am out here always loving you. 

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