Many of you know that my father passed away one week ago today.  It has been the most amazing 2 weeks. As I reflect and consider everything that has happened in the past two weeks I am amazed at the divine order of things. We will explore this next week but for today I want to consider how we reflect, reconnect and renew.

My dad has had a profound impact on all of his children (6) for many different reasons.  We have not been a close family and are spread across this country as well as one sister who lives down under.  A death creates a unique environment for reflection, reconnection and renewal. This is how I choose to see the death of my dad.

My dad is one of the reasons I believe we have not been a close family.  He created a very competitive environment and although his intentions were good the result was not.  A sense of winning has plagued our relationships and a focus on getting my dads love and attention made it sometimes adversarial.

As we prepared to come together to morn our loss and celebrate a life I wondered how it would all go. I was optimistic and open to every opportunity and was looking forward to seeing everyone.

These are major events in a person’s life and sometimes they can bring back some no so great memories.  Not this time. Every memory was a pleasing one; we talked about how playful dad was and how he loved to read to us when we were little. We talked about how he had a love of nature and being outside and how taking a long walk was one of the most thought provoking activities we did as a family.  I reconnected with my siblings in a way I have not done for decades.

I expected heaviness but in fact there was a lighthearted and renewed sense of life and purpose. There is nothing to read into this, and no judgments, just a true celebration of a life. My dad was what tied us together but was also part of why we were driven apart. Today my dad is a catalyst for renewal and rejuvenation.  One of the themes for me was a renewed confirmation that unconditional love is not only possible but easy when a person removes judgments and expectations and is simply open and accepting.

 

I am grateful for all of the roles my dad played both in life and after death.