A Moment of Celebration

Last night, we decorated our Christmas Tree. My husband, Patrick and I set the evening aside to finally take time to celebrate the Holiday Season, which got lost in the events of the past week with the transition of Nora. As we got ready, all of a sudden, I felt an incredible deep sadness about Nora. I felt like I shouldn’t be celebrating at all. How can I be happy when there is sorrow all around me? I thought of my friends and their deep sorrow and pain. It just wasn’t right to take this moment of Holiday cheer.

I stopped myself and turned around to the idea that Nora loved Christmas so much. Why couldn’t I, instead, dedicate our tree to her and her vibrant and loving Spirit. We could create this moment for her, celebrating her. Perhaps in doing so, it would assist her on her journey, and help us to heal. And so, we did.

It didn’t change the sadness we felt, but our sadness had more meaning and a hidden joy waiting to be born at a later date. It enriched and deepened us. I felt comforted in the fact that I could do something for her – something beautiful and joyful, instead of wallowing in morbidity.

When we mourn, sometimes we feel that we cannot even take a moment to be happy about the life we are living. Many people experience this – soldiers who wonder why they did not die and their buddies did; parents who lose children, wondering why they were not taken instead. After all, the youngest person has their whole life ahead of them. These are the rocky paths we walk in mourning. There are many of them and they are all necessary and individual.

I feel grateful that I could take last night to celebrate life, Christmas and love in Nora’s name. For a moment, I felt a little lighter.

As the new dawn breaks this morning and the next, I know we are all processing our feelings in our own way. I will continue to take a moment to celebrate Nora by doing something meaningful and joyful for myself and those around me. There is a gift there within.

Love and Aloha,

Rev. Rita

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