Last Saturday, I celebrated two people embarking on a new life together – a wedding. This past Saturday, I celebrated the life of my aunt – a funeral.
Life is impermanent
In 2019, we were on the warm sands of Jamaica celebrating her grandson’s wedding. The wedding was a beautiful moment where family got together to celebrate a happy occasion. In retrospect, I am grateful to have spent that time with my aunt. Who knew that eight months later the pandemic would arrive? Travel and weddings were halted in the face of a global crisis. The wedding last Saturday, was the first I have attended since my little cousin’s wedding in Jamaica.
Every time someone passes, the universe shifts. Much like the pandemic, there is the world that existed before and the new world order that exists after the event. I think about my godmother whose passing caused seismic changes in my world.
Life is cyclical
My aunt and my godmother were both old school saints. Having grown up COGIC (#IYKYK), the old school saints represented tradition and faithfulness. My godmother was someone whose advice and judgment I trusted. The old saints could ‘get a prayer through’. With the passing of the old guard, an uncomfortable truth is birthed. We are the new elders.
What will our legacy be? What will my legacy be? It is tough thinking of myself as an ‘elder’ when I still feel the preteen angst of not quite knowing how I fit in the world. I am still learning and growing.
Bearing the Load
Funerals are horrible for empathic souls like myself. I cry when I see another’s tears. My heart aches when a head is bowed in sorrow. Words cannot erase the sting of death. Being present in loving support is all we can do. If pain is transferable, then so must be hope and love.
My nephew was one of the pallbearers. A loaded casket can weigh at least 300 pounds. Yet the weight is distributed amongst six or more men, making the load less heavy. We attend funerals to celebrate the life of the person who has graduated to heaven. We also go to provide emotional support to the immediate family so that an unbearable loss can be borne.
If you could have one superpower, what would it be? I have one. It is a blessing and a curse.
I can time time travel. I do it quite often. I live in the past, remembering what was or how I did not take advantage of some opportunity. I live in the future, dreaming of a future where my dreams are my reality.
My cryptonite. Living in the here and now.
I was watching a reality show and a stylist was being reprimanded by the owner. She was trying to point out how the stylist could handle conflict better. The stylist swung around in her chair repeatedly stating that, mentally, she was at Disney World. When she came back to earth, the conflict remained unresolved.
There are moments in life that are not pleasant. You can choose to mentally escape or be present. Feel the moment and what it brings – pain, discomfort, fear. It is only when you are fully present can you ascertain the situation. You will do what is necessary to prevent the same issue in the future. People who time travel escape the moment but the circumstances remain.
I was sitting in the sauna and overheard a conversation between a woman (27-ish) and man (43-ish). The 27 year old woman recounted many events in which her mom physically and emotionally abused her as a child. The older man tried to offer advice. The woman just voiced how the past would not allow her a future relationship with her mother. They went back in forth. The younger women revisiting her past and the older man remember his own.
I just sat there sweating. I really wanted to relax and not think about anything but I was vicariously time travelling via someone else's memory. I could see it all flashing through my mind. Unforgiveness, you are stuck in the past. Procrastination, anticipation, angst – personality traits of a voyager of time.
I closed my eyes allowing the heat to purge the toxic sweat from my body.
It is better to be in the moment. In life, it is all we truly possess.
As part of our seemingly endless conversations about relationships, a friend mentioned the idea of marrying someone with whom you are not in love. As evidence, this friend mentioned a woman who says that she married a man because everyone else told her that he was such a "good" man. It was when their child turned two years of age that she looked up one day and realized that she loved him. Now she is head-over-heels, over-the-moon in love.
Is this even possible? Think about it. You date, court, become engaged, plan a wedding, marry and have a child all the while waiting for love to blossom. The uber romantic in me says, posh! The faithful side of me thinks that this is possible. Maybe the man/woman that God has as your destiny mate is not the cat's meow in your eyes right now.Maybe the way someone loves you can transform them from frog to prince.
There is another side of me, the cynic. The cynic thinks what if after two years and a child, you look at your wonderfully devoted husband and get the sudden urge to run out of the front door and never come back.
I need more evidence. Can any of you attest to this love comes after phenomenon? Please leave a comment or two.
Usually this blog is all about me – what I am doing, what I want.This time I wanted to celebrate someone else.
Many of you know that I have journaled my experiences in Dallas, TX since I touched down nearly five years ago. Today I attended a graduation of a friend who moved to Dallas, TX about 1 month earlier than me.
I sat and marveled at what God has done in her life. I have told her that I remember our conversation that we had when I had first moved here and she was showing me around town. She stated how she wanted a husband and family. She was in seminary. Here I was sitting, today, in the audience as she received her Master's Degree with her husband and baby sitting to my left.
I marvelled at how faithful God is. I know that I am single with no children but seeing God fulfil promises for others lets me know that he is a promise fulfilling God.
At a Starbucks with a few ladies and the conversation gathered around the subject of children. I mentioned to the ladies that I had always wanted to adopt a child even as a really young girl. Two of the more mature ladies say, "Oh you would make a wonderful mother." I have NO idea why but I almost choked up a little.
It is especially crazy seeing that the other woman present had previously said to me, "You just don't like children." lol
Truth is – I love children. I would love to have a houseful as long as I am in a happy marriage and financially set.
What I absolutely do not love is the idea of pushing a baby out of my va-jay-jay! lol Whose idea was that? I guess that is the best method of delivery and women have been doing it for millenia but um. . .
I actually dreamed once several years back that I was at a dining room table introducing someone to my four children. They all had black shiny, curly hair.
Most of my dreams have been coming true so time will tell. But the timing is God's. I will submit to that.
I am always attempting to predict the future. I put off things I really want to do afraid that once I commit something in my situation will change and I won't be able to follow through.
The big questions of my life have centered around employment and where to live. I am fairly convinced that God has me in Dallas but employment – still a conundrum.
The irony is I am still in relatively the same place after 4 years, no big life changes yet. So why do I let this uncertainty stop my plans?
OAN: This girl from undergrad moved to Texas around the same time that I did. She was really nice and helped me navigate my new city.
I remember this one particular drive, she lamented being single. She mentioned a mutual friend of ours who was married and at the time pregnant with her first child. During our drive she said aloud that she really wanted that – a husband and family. I am so bad because I remember thinking – poor girl may not ever happen. I guess I was a bit jaded about that stuff then.
Fast forward and she is married and just had a beautiful baby boy. I was on the book of the face and looking at pictures of the tiny tot. On one hand, I was super excited and happy for her and on another I was kinda bummed out by me. I thought God am I remedial? Why am I not moving forward?
Maybe it's the doubt and uncertainty that causes me not to commit to anything or even say yes when a guy asks me out. IDK. I know the money thing always throws me for a loop. I need to make more money so I am always trying to find a better gig. This leads to more uncertainty. Ugh!
I wish one of my readers was a psychologist because I really need to figure this thing out, preferably, before age forty.