My sister-in-law Gail recently forwarded to me an old family photo of my mother Stacia’s immediate family. It was retrieved by her from the facebook page of Carolyn one of my first cousins.
In Carolyn’s facebook she stated that our grandparents would have been celebrating their 100 th wedding anniversary this week had they still been living. It feels like it was just yesterday when we were all together as one big happy family celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. Where have all the years gone? Life seems to move very fast especially the older we get.
As I look at the electronic copy of this family portrait which was taken shortly before World War II (late 1930s or early 1940s) I fondly remember that the original portrait was previously hanging in the sun porch of my parents former home in Massachusetts.
As I look at this photo, I wonder the emotions my mother must go through, now realizing that she is the sole survivor of her immediate family as well as the lone survivor of all her childhood friends. My Mother who is now almost 96 yeara young, is the pretty young women in the center rear row in the photo above and who was the 3rd oldest of her siblings. There is so much love and history in that photo that certaily must trigger for my Mom many memories of her childhood both the joyous as well as the challenging times of growing up in America in that generation.
I often wondered how one copes with going on in life after everyone from their immediate family as well as all friends from their generation are gone. It must feel strange to be the last one standing.
God I truly believe has a plan for us all and pre-determines our destiny in life. There is no guarantee that members of your family or your friends will pass from this earth in order of their seniority.
When family or friends pass away unexpectantly especially when at a very young age, despite the sorrow, I try to look at their passing with a positive spin. I truly consider death to actually be just another step in our eternal lives which we will all eventually go thru. When God chooses to call some folks early from this earth (such as my Dear Terry for example) I look at this to be God’s special way to reward these individuals with an accelerated promotion to heaven and to allow them to by pass some of the other challenges of life and to hopefully have an influential and positive impact upon others through their spirit by the way they lived and embraced their lives while here on this earth.
However, at the same token, God chooses others like my Mom to be blessed to live a long and fruitful life here on this Earth and to hopefully set a positive example for others, to be a good person and to be compassionate to others and to embrace life to the fullest, while simultaneously instilling their wealth of knowledge about life and good values upon our younger generations.
I am so glad that my Mom is still living and that she is blessed to have three devoted sons to look after her welfare in her later years despite being the sole survivor of her generation.
We can learn a lot about life from those who God has chosen to be living disciples on this earth as well as from the spirit of other loved ones that God has chosen for an a accelerated promotion to the gates of heaven.