In the past ten years I have witnessed a great deal of loss. I suppose that I must be thankful that the people closest to me (my immediate family and friends) have been relatively safe and in good health in this season. Still, a knot in my stomach seems to grow larger, every time I learn of death within a few orders of separation from those I have grown to love. Perhaps it should simply make me more thankful that my loved ones are alive and well, but every time I experience death--directly or transiently--I dread more the day that a family member or close friend comes to pass.
I wonder how my emotions will fly. I think about how my life will change. I wonder how the lives of others will change. I worry about how I will react. I know that there is most definitely a chance that I will spiral out of control. The ever-growing knot in my stomach--anticipation--is a warning sign. I cannot let that happen--I want to be able to honor my loved ones after they pass on. So I write to ready my heart, to calm my mind.