A dear friend of mine and I went to the International Gem and Bead Show yesterday. This show travels all over the country, and we always go to the one held in Marlborough, MA in May, July and November. Yesterday was great and we had a wonderful time buying beads, jewelry and even some Christmas gifts.
In the past 13 or so years, mom would be with us, too. This year she can’t as she is in Hospice at home with cancer. So she funded our entire trip, and told us to have a ball. We did. But we felt her presence with us all day long. Whenever I considered whether or not to buy something, I could hear her say in my head, “Oh, for Heaven’s sake, BUY IT! You know you won’t find it again, and you’ll kick yourself for not picking it up. Besides, it’s in wholesale, for crying out loud!”
We had our traditional “bead day lunch” at Longhorn’s; a small sirloin steak with red rock shrimp, a Caesar salad and baked potato. After all these years, this has become our “go to” lunch, and certainly gives us the protein and energy we need to return to the show.
We re-entered the show; once you’ve been hand-stamped at the door the first time, you can walk right back in again. The plan had been to wrap up our shopping, then drive up to Mom’s and Dad’s house to show Mom what we bought. By the time we felt we had done all the damage we could, it was nearly 5:00pm, which is when the show wraps up for the day. I knew that it would take us at least two hours to drive up to Mom’s, so we rescheduled our visit.
Be that as it may, here’s the thing: this was a testament of the strength of love; to transcend time, space, and even death. I know that, when my mom dies of the cancer that is taking over her body, I will still have access to her at any time. I know that she will be there in my head and heart to advise me and to put her usual funny spin on things. I know that I will continue to talk with her for the rest of my life. I also know that, where she is going, she will continue being a force for great good and comfort. This, I am convinced, is how it all works once you get to the other side.
We never lose those we love; we carry them forever in our hearts and have access to them at all times.