Today was my grandpa's funeral. I was blessed to sit, surrounded by family and friends, (and only the occasional inappropriate question from my offspring) and remember the man who was the cornerstone of our family for so many years. The sky was a grateful blue, scattered across with clouds like faithful friends, the breeze blew soft and kind... and goodbyes, though difficult, were said with love.
And so, for him, and for all my beautiful family, are these thoughts:
What words are there to speak at the end of a life?
What words for the empty place at our side, at the table, at the golf game... in our hearts.
We would speak words of comfort, to ease the ache and sadness of these our troubled days.
We would speak words of love and kindness - the kind that is quick to offer help with no strings attached, that sees a need and is always the first to reach in and fill it...the kind my grandpa had.
We would speak words of life and joy and hope. Words that would recall to us his smile - that grin so bright and flashing it could light things on fire; or his laughter, that to me was always and only a laugh of pure delight - at being right there, where he was. In that moment.
We would speak words of adventure and daring. Words that would call us to go farther; to push beyond the things we know and to see and do and be more... as he always did.
And so - as words are such small things, and weak - let us speak these words not with our mouths, but with our lives. Let the way we see each other, and the way we keep and care for and defend the ones we love say it for us. As my grandpa did. He was a man who lived all of these words eloquently.
I find that now it falls to us to shoulder the mantle he has worn for so long. That of love, of enterprise and fearless undertaking, of compassion, and of the sheer, blazing joy of walking around for all our days on this darkly spinning earth.
Let us hold each other dear. Let us recall the things that are important, minute by minute. Let us be swift to tend to those we love, swift to laugh, and swift to dare.
His legacy is ours. To be grateful for. To internalize, and to pass on, as he did. The silent, singing words of a life well-lived.
the best of memories,