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November 21, 2012

Forever Thankful

Ours will be the smallest Thanksgiving ever this year, with a grand total of three at our table. Our family's first incomplete Thanksgiving occurred the year our mother died. That year we set her usual place with a lighted candle. This year, I will light one beautiful candle for all the loved ones who have preceded me to another life and will remember them with deepest gratitude. The following poem has appeared at more than one friend's or family member's funeral service. I've found that it nearly always strikes a chord with others. Gratitude can indeed outweigh, outpace, and overshadow grief.  May your gratitude be greater than your grief, this Thanksgiving and always.

Photo, Ysabel de la Rosa

I Accept


Grief is great pain borne on greater gratitude for all the
presence the absent one bequeathed

Gratitude for the music of the memories
I play and replay in mind and heart

Gratitude for all that was, is, and will be you:
the many gifts of time and heart, the work done well,
the laughter shared,
 the joy and the sorrow

Gratitude for all you gave to all and to me,
each gift of self wrapped ’round with love

I accept the pain your absence brings,
for I have known you, loved you, and you
have known me, loved me;
for God has loved us and
we have loved God together

For all this, I accept this great grief
with even greater gratitude


Poem and photo copyright Ysabel de la Rosa, all rights reserved.

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