Over the past week or so, I’ve seen people I know plunged into unexpected grief. And I’m wondering, how much does it take before I learn to cherish the people that I have in my own life?
Often we scrabble to retrieve memories after someone dies, and regret we didn’t make more when they were still alive. My papa died when I was eleven so the moments I can recall are just a few snapshots- putting my little finger into his massive hand or watching him walking with a tall stick round the lane in Donegal. One of my grannies died when I was a teenager and I have a vague memory of our last conversation when she gave me valuable advice I can’t remember now. If only I had treasured it the way that I should.
We can be full of regret at missed conversations, things unsaid. But there is always the present, the people with us now. Last weekend when I was away with my family and my parents I found myself spending time with them deliberately. I saw when my dad looked happy to see me, I hugged mum more than usual and I just kept noticing that we were together. It was one of the most blessed weekends I’ve ever had.
So I’m just giving you a wee nudge to try living with more awareness of the people in your life. I’ll try to do it if you will.