I had a strangely emotional experience this week. It was at a funeral, so not so strange it was emotional, I hear you say… But I didn’t go because the beautiful lady it was for was a close friend of mine. She was someone I looked up to, was inspired by and respected. But I wasn’t expecting tears. It just wasn’t like that.
But then it was.
That’s the strange thing about funerals, I think. They make you stop, really stop, and reflect. And often on so much more than the person’s life you’re there to celebrate.
I felt like someone had turned the tap of my emotions on. Not some great gush or anything. But some quiet, gentle leaking of tears that represented lots of feelings that I’d had tidily tucked up inside until then.
It’s hard to try to find the words to describe what those feelings were. It certainly wasn’t clear to me at the time. But if I had to really push myself I’d say that these things give a clue as to what my mind was churning while my tears were falling….
The fear of watching what her family were going through and realising that I’ll have to do that too one day.
The joy of seeing family and close friends so immeasurably proud of the beautiful, vivacious one they’d just lost.
The incredible, and overwhelming, opportunity there is to live a life that inspires others through the love, and effort, and time you put in.
The shock reminder of the extreme fragility of life and the absolute necessity to live it to the full, regardless.
The (selfish) hope that when it’s my turn, the people that surround me will be as proud of me as her loved ones were of her.
The sincere hope that they’ll have good reason to, and I won’t get to the end with a pile of regrets all saying how much more I could have, should have, given/tried/loved.
The gratitude I have for my life right now, the blessings I experience daily, and the paths ahead of me, ripe for exploring.