We buried my niece last Monday. And yes, there was grief - heart wrenching grief – and hugs, food and flowers, and an outpouring of love for my sister and our family. But what struck me the most, looking out from the back seat of our chauffeur-driven car, was how normal everything looked – but how different it all felt.
We seemed to be suspended in some sort of bright, other worldly cocoon of something that I can only describe as peace or grace. I don’t know whether it was the spirit of my niece, the energy of prayers coming from all different directions, or special comforting angels, specially assigned to funeral processions. In any case, it was real and palpable and like nothing I’ve ever felt before.
And I understand now what is meant when they say, “There is no birth without death.” Amidst the tombstones and still bare trees, tiny spring wildflowers were blooming, fruit trees were budding, and my family and I let go of past hurts. Petty misunderstandings and grudges all fell away as we sat before my niece’s flower-laden casket. We didn’t have to talk about it. We didn’t have to try. It just happened.
For many people, Easter represents death and rebirth. For others, the arrival of spring does the same thing. In either case, surrender is key.
Whether it requires an illness, death, or financial crisis, there comes a time when you know you’ve done all that you can – a time when all the clenching and posturing, efforting and pretending, becomes so exhausting that you finally let go. And when that happens, the peace and grace, love and compassion, that’s always been present, is born again . . . in you.
Rhyne Smith Andrews Callens
September 23, 1988 - March 14, 2019
"The moment of surrender is not when life is over. It's when it begins." Marianne Williamson