I wrote this, for my friend and colleague Christy, two and half years ago. But it’s perfect also for my friend and colleague Pamela, who I’m remembering today.
Sometimes, in the midst of all our striving, longing, and reaching, our building of towers and the making of names for ourselves, it’s important to remember that one day we will, with certainty, lose it all.
Some of this will happen piece by piece. We’ll gradually say goodbye to people as they leave life. We’ll realise, perhaps suddenly, that their presence in the world touched our hearts and lit up our eyes. We’ll find out that their worth is beyond words.
And for all of us, the loss will also come entirely at once – maybe at a time when we least expect it, before we can even know it’s happening – when it is ‘I’ who is leaving and it is others who have to say goodbye.
Some of us take a long time to find all this out, holding our inner gifts back from the world until we’re sure the time is just right – a time that may never come.
But others seem to live with this understanding so fully in their hearts it’s as if nothing is withheld. They’ve discovered that the point of life is life itself, and that each of us is simply another expression of life’s beauty and wonder. And from this understanding flows their kindness, their generosity and their wisdom, so that they shine brighter than the sun.