Archive for the ‘Loss’ Category

Remember that you are dust and to dust you will return.

Everywhere I look: endings.

A teenaged girl at the grave of her father.

A friend’s unforeseen farewell to her brother.

A mother with a wrung-out womb and empty arms.

Thirty-three brothers and sisters silenced across the wide ocean.

We are so powerless to stop it all.

— — —

At midday on Ash Wednesday my son and I entered through the big red doors of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. We sat on the front pew because that’s where the coloring books were. I soon realized my error in sitting there; I spent the entire service glancing over my shoulder to see what everyone else was doing so that I wouldn’t expose myself as the novice I am in a liturgical service.

Silas was the only child present, but the priest did a children’s sermon anyway. It turned out to be the only 3 minutes of the hour-long service that Silas sat still.

“When you see the spring flowers growing,” the priest said, “remember that Jesus wants us to grow, too.”

And then we knelt on a faded gold cushion and received our ashes while the priest reminded us that we are dying.

— — —

Yesterday at the doctor’s office Silas watched pieces of a movie he’d never seen before. He cried when Charlotte told Wilbur she was about to die. It was the first time that death broke his heart. I cried too, knowing it will not be the last.

Remember that you are dust and to dust you will return.


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