Everything happens for a reason

Sometimes death happens in threes.  Last week, A. & I attended two evening wakes for Tita L. followed by her funeral. We also learned of cousins V. and A.'s beloved grandmother's death in Brazil, and this afternoon, we attended the wake of Tito C.'s brother. Those who have recently experienced the loss of a loved one are all in A.'s extended family. 

In the midst of both sadness and celebration of their lives as some family members shared intimate details of their loved ones' light and true nature, one can't help but try to make sense of Life.

In addition to death, the daily pressures of work deadlines along with an understaffed fundraising department as well as the anticipation of maternity leave in August and what would be my Dad's 73rd birthday tomorrow are not so subtle warnings to breathe and take it one moment at a time.

A. and I were thankful to accept family friends', G. & C.'s, invitation to celebrate their younger son's first birthday and christening with them today, especially after what has seemed like an emotionally challenging couple of weeks.  Z. happens to share the same birthday as Dad - June 4. Admittedly, it is such a comfort to experience something so promising as opposed to all of the somberness generally associated with death. 

Why is it that most Filipino Catholic wakes are full of sorrow and take place in dimly lit funeral homes that feel like a dungeon?  Why isn't it more practiced to have such events in a garden courtyard flanked by flowers, plants, trees and a soothing fountain that are more of a celebratory sendoff or in some Christian circles, more of a homecoming or rebirth?

Z.'s festivities were in the form of a casual pool party with old family friends whom I've known since I was about 4 years old, Jersey City friends who knew my parents.  Visiting especially with G. and C. always leaves A. and me extremely thankful for the opportunity to connect with them.  Truly grounded and authentic in their ways of being, it is quite enchanting to be in their Light.  C.'s centeredness exudes, and it's more than her being a yogi.  Being in her presence is a most welcome and heartening gift.  Thank you once again for the invitation to celebrate with you, G., C., V. and Z.!

After a brief rain shower, I peeked through their kitchen window and witnessed the sun breaking through the clouds. For a few seconds, I could think of nothing except . . . Certain moments make sense.  Sometimes we have to chuckle at the chaos, smile through the tears, and remind ourselves that everything happens for a reason.