Clarity

I realized today that it has been nearly 3 years since I’ve attended a funeral. (No, I have no idea why or how I ended up on this train of thought.) Three years doesn’t seem like a long time until I started thinking backwards and it appears that this may be the longest stretch I’ve gone without a funeral since junior high school. Sure, travesty and natural disasters and terrorism have happened in those three years, but nothing so close to home that I sat in a church grieving. I should count my blessings, I know, but that isn’t what I was doing.

Where, you are probably thinking, is this going? Oddly enough I’m not headed down some teary lane. Actually I was thinking about how I always leave funerals with a complete clarity of mind and senses. Do you know what I mean? Where you have cried until there are no tears left, and when you take that first step out of the church or away from the graveside, everything just seems brighter and clearer? You notice the amazing colors of the trees and sky. You actually hear the birds singing. The air smells fresher. You feel a little taller, a little lighter, a little more in touch with every thing and every person around you. God seems a little closer, a little more of a physical presence than a distant idea.

I was thinking today about how I wish I could live every day of my life with the appreciation and understanding I feel after funerals. Not so much a “stop and smell the roses” lifestyle, but more an overall awareness of the bigger picture. I don’t want to live my life being afraid that each day could be the last, but rather live it humbled by the fact that there is a day at all. That miracle of miracles, I’m alive. And just like the day after a funeral, nothing else really matters.

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