This weekend we had friends come visit. It was a full house with kids running all around and it was busy and noisy and interesting to hear how our conversation always led back to our family life, our children, our home...when just 5 years ago, Erwin adn I were the only in his group of friends to even have children. Amazing what happens in such a short span of a few years in the mid to late 30's age range. It was erally nice to catch up with friends we see far too often.
During our conversation, I heard for the first time that the mother of Erwin's good friend is suffering from cancer. I had no idea, though she has been sick for 2 years already. It has again spread, now into her liver, and she is on morphine patches for pain...they don't expect her to live much longer. As we talked about this big happening in his life, Erwin's friend let tears loose as he told that the hardest part for him is seeing his parents, whom he has always looked up to, whom have always been there for him, as vulnerable. His eyes wet with unshed tears he spoke about how we expect them to always be there, because they always have been, but then suddenly we have to come to the realization that they are vulnerable, they won't be here forever, and we have to think about a future where they are no longer with us to give us advice and to lean on for strength. We have to become the strength and advisors for our own children, we now the parents that our children look up to, an ever present security in our own children's lives.
Seeing him with teary eyes and speaking from his heart, I just wanted to reach over and hug him tight, tell him it would be okay, be the strength that he's now missing in his own mother. But I can't be. I can only be here for my own children, and give them the best of me that I can, so they can one day feel that same bond that Erwin's friend has come to recognize within his relationship with his own mother.
We are all vulnerable. Life happens, and can be taken from us at any moment in time. We need to remember to rejoice in the good times, hold on to the present and be happy for all that we have. We need to give our children a security with which to grow up, and go on to share in the generations to come. What we are doing at this very moment in time is our legacy, for when we are only memories buried in the earth, what we do with this moment in time is all that will have mattered. Death is contained in the circle of life. And though death hurts, it brings us reality, a reality of from where we have come, and where we want to be...what we want our legacy to be....and how we can best pass that on to our children, our grandchildren, and the world we will never know.