Just remembering
November 30 2001 by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor

Just remembering | Friday, Nov 30, 2001

Friday, Nov 30, 2001

Just remembering

By Tony W. Cartledge BR Editor The day came and went with little fanfare, but I remembered. I had thought about it for some time, working out the date in my head, rechecking to make sure it was right.

The day was November 30, and it was the 2,873rd day since our daughter died on a cold January South Carolina road.

The number is significant (to me, at least) because Bethany's life on this earth ended just 2,873 days after it began, 50 days short of her eighth birthday.

When Nov. 30 arrived, we had lived without Bethany for the same amount of time we lived with her.

It still hurts, though the pain is not so near the surface as it was.

People are funny about death dates. When someone especially close to us dies, we remember the date like a birthday. We mentally mark it down as another year past, another cycle of seasons and holidays observed with a hole in the heart.

By God's grace, as the years go by, our memories are tinged more with quiet smiles than with bitter tears, with sweetness rather than salt.

It is a gift of God, the ability to move beyond sorrow to find healing and wholeness and hope.

It is a gift of God that comes with time, often mediated by the gifts of God's people who remind us that they remember, too.

The holiday season can be especially trying to those who have lost loved ones during the past year. Memories come crashing back. The extra space under the tree cries out for presents neither bought nor given. It hurts, and there's no way around it.

Friends can make all the difference - just by understanding, by remembering, by reminding the mourner that they remember, too.

For someone who's hurting, there's no better gift.

Don't be stingy.

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11/30/2001 12:00:00 AM by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor | with 0 comments
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