Death and grief is something that we all deal with at one stage in our lives. The commonality between us all is that we are born and we will die. But most people spend their lives running from death. I recently lost a very close friend to brain cancer. At the age of 31 she left behind, her daughter, partner, family and many dear friends. She has left in my heart a humbling lesson. My friend left behind her world and went into the next with acceptance and fearlessness. Watching her die with this fearlessness is helping me conquer my fears of life, the small daily things I do or don’t do out of fear. I am forever grateful for our friendships and the many lessons and gifts she gave me. One poem we shared was the following. And anytime I feel myself missing her a little too much I think of this.
Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.