"For all that has been, thanks. For all that will be, yes." - Dag Hammarskjold

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

recognizing what is there amidst what is not there...

It's been a tough weekend, emotionally.

A beloved family member was admitted to palliative care... she appears to be nearing the end of her cancer journey. She's 1000 km away and I can't be there.
Another beloved family member is at the beginning of his cancer journey and his community came together for an amazing benefit concert in his honour. It was 1000 km away and I couldn't be there.

The decision to leave my home province is one I made many years ago and I have never regretted it. But at times like these, it's tough. It's as if the sadness is deepened by the distance... my powerlessness is acutely felt because I can't do the simple things like stop in to offer help. Or pick up groceries. Or sit with my aunt at the hospital. Or offer my mom a hug. I'm 1000 km away and I'm not there.

On Monday morning, I came across these words:

"Help us to recognize and to rejoice in what is given, Holy One, even in the midst of what is not given." - Richard Rohr

If this isn't a call to practice gratitude, then I don't know what is!  And so, reflecting on this, here is a small sampling of what has been given this weekend:
  • Facebook.  Yes, Facebook. A family group where news, and photos, and videos can be shared.  And family members who take the time to post and keep us informed.
  • Texting.  Yes, texting. And a late-night "conversation" with my cousin who was sitting at my aunt's bedside... sharing thoughts and being able to write "tell her I send my love!" and being able to read "she sends love back!".
  • Telephones.  Yes, telephones. And chats with my Mom who lives afar.  And chats with my sister, who lives nearby.  Sharing news.
I am grateful for these words that encouraged me to look beyond what wasn't there... and to recognize what was.  And this past weekend, technology seems to have been cause for rejoicing.

Is there something you can be grateful for today, in the midst of what is not there?

gratefully yours,

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