"There is a season for everything under the sun..."
These words gripped me gently washing over me.
It is a knowing that helps me rest within my Self.
The leaf falling from the tree twirling in the winds.
The squirrel laying lifeless in the road.
Our loved ones who leave this earth.
There is something so poetic even in the tragedy of loss experienced through death. A season, a beginning and an ending with life exchanged in ways we recognize and ways we don't. Some seasons are brief and some extended. There is a mystical aspect to each season that allows us to rest in what is to allow the unknown to be and this makes even the end of the season beautiful.
Yesterday, my beloved fury companion Tigger died. There was no visible trauma. His body lay still next to the litter box. He was always high strung from the moment he made his way to our porch. He clung to the screen talking away, ordering us to let him in with his high pitched voice. His name came from him bouncing around this house, entering the room thunderously, jumping from the dresser to the bed to the floor in a single bound. His temperament while loving and playful could also be pissy with his tail erect as he stomped around the bedroom until I would let him out onto the back porch.
I had heard stories about cats and other pets dying, deciding to check out and leave this life during times of transitions with the family. Even when my late-husband, John died, they were deeply in mourning to the point where I didn't know if I would wake up and find one dead. When I had decided to move, I began to talk to each of the cats about what was happening ,tuning in to each of them, honoring them and thanking them for the journey we had shared and for all they gave me throughout the years.
Last week, I was driving down a country road when I realized that what initially appeared to be a stick was actually a squirrel. I was so relieved that I recognized this so I could stop and let it go across to safety. Then, I had this jolting moment of clarity: If it was time for the squirrel to die, to return to the Source, to go the heavens, you could not have stopped this. And let's get your power in perspective, you would not be responsible for the death of the squirrel (unless you sped up to deliberately hit and kill it). The death of this creature and all God's creatures is between God and them...For everything under the sun, there is a season.
The truth of this there is a season of life for each of us freed me from any residual energy within that believed I was responsible for John's death - that there was something I could have done to stop it. I remembered being out on a run several months after John's passing and having a poem download: When death comes, it comes. You can't stop it. Like a train on the tracks of life. Full speed into what lies beyond what we can see, what we know... This stark reality can leave us feeling powerless because we actually are powerless as humans in many ways. Yes, we have the power of choices, we do what we can, we listen to our bodies when they need to be checked out by doctors or need rest or changes in diet and exercise. And when death comes, it is the end of our season here.
The invitation this day is to use this knowing to embrace all the experiences that come your way. Remember, that one day when this season ends, we shall miss even the things about being human that we curse (Yes! Even taxes and taking out the trash and caring for a loved one and being stuck in traffic). Keep your heart light. Find your way to laughter and joy again and again and again even when life brings events that make you cry. Hold both the pain and the joy. This is your life. It is sacred. It is.