Today is the 3rd of the month and the day that the Golden Goose of Social Security lays its monthly egg. Last night, I faced over two months of haphazard bookkeeping due to my broken shoulder. After a couple of hours, I had managed to bring one checkbook up to date and take care of the projected bills for January. I was up later than I would have liked while working on the bills, and went to bed a bit after 2 a.m., hoping I would go immediately into a restful sleep. I did go to sleep fairly quick, but was woken by pain around 5:30 a.m. I felt as though I’d just got to bed. For some reason, when I lay down or sit in one position for any length of time, my muscles eventually tighten up and pain soon follows. Sometimes changing my position eases the pain, and if I’m sleeping, I can nod off again. If not, then there was always the ever-present acetaminophen sitting on the kitchen shelf. Repositioning myself in bed didn’t help, so I decided that there was nothing for it but to get up and get moving. I gently eased out of bed, picked up my glasses from the headboard and reached down for my slippers. It was going to be a long day, but perhaps a nap could be worked in.
There are times in life when we come across situations that are distinct enough that they can actually be interpreted as a message — I like to think they come from the other side of the veil. My computer desk area is usually covered in various pieces of paper–notes, phone messages, etc. This morning, it was fairly clear and as I moved my coaster closer to my computer in anticipation of my first cup of coffee, I uncovered a small laminated card. I didn’t remember handling it in the most recent past and idly wondered how it got there. Then I looked at it and began reading it. The first thought/image that came to my mind was that of my sister Sudie, who passed away in 2001. I don’t know how that card came to be laying on my desk, or even why I happened to see it this morning. I do know that the feeling of comfort that I felt from the message was that my sister is still with me. I can’t see her or touch her, but I can feel her presence and however that card came to be there for me to pick up this morning, I’ll accept that she wanted me to know she was here with me. For now, that’s enough.
Death is nothing at all. I have only slipped away into the next room. I am I, and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we still are. Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference in your tone, wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together. Pray, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word that it always was, let it be spoken without effect, without the trace of a shadow on it. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was; there is un-broken continuity. Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just round the corner. All is well.
— Henry Scott Holland
Canon of St. Paul’s Cathedral
Be safe, be well, and please be happy. Be sure to tell those you love that you love them. There are more things unknown about this life we are living than are known. Always trust your instincts and listen to that small voice inside your mind…