Saturday, May 7, 2011

Moving ... On

There is nothing more true in our lives than that we are constantly forced to move on with them. Time in fact has no respect for our longing for it to stand still and little care for our desire to have things remain as they are, for however brief a period. In fact, we often question whether time is as impersonal as we are led to believe, as it often seems that eventful change is secretly accumulated in places that we are not aware of and used to surprise us when least expected. 

The only constant that seems to hold sway is that just when we believe that we have some level of control over the change that's going on in our lives, some almost malevolent entity in charge of this process decides to illustrate otherwise; and often in ways that insure we clearly understand how little we actually do control. 

Now some moving on is simply moving on, and those of you reading this blog recognize that I only recently concluded a change of residence. While the move itself was only a short distance, making sure that your stuff is properly prepared to be taken from one place to another is always an 'interesting' experience. The fact that much of mine had been in storage for some time, and that I had therefore lost all recollection of where things were packaged, made (and still makes) the unpacking experience particularly exciting. 

Some of you also may know that my mother was moving at almost the same time, in her case from a place where she had lived for a number of years. Downsizing from a four-bedroom home to a two-bedroom condo also presents some unique and 'interesting' challenges and choices as well. Leaving a home that you had shared with someone for many years presents one with emotional baggage that must also be properly organized and carefully packed away. 

Few of you probably know that my mother's move was complicated further by a construction delay to her new home. It seems that the electrical contractor had failed as a business (and may have stiffed some of its employees in the process). Understanding souls that these workers were, these soon-to-be former employees reacted by cutting internal wiring (that they had just installed) in the building on their way out, punishing innocent bystanders as well as the development company in charge of the project. 

As a consequence of this poor planning and execution, and of her own good planning in setting up the preparation and sale of her house, she will be forced to move into a hotel for a couple of weeks while the builder attempts to complete her new home. She will then be blessed with yet another move, this time finally into what will become her new home. 

In the midst of this however, we received notice that my uncle, Gordon Higgins, passed away in Seattle last weekend. He had been ill for some time (I believe setting a medical record for the number of simultaneous cancers that he had in the process) and this passing was probably inevitable; but its timing was unexpected and as always, tragic. 

In fact, Gordy had been holding the Grim Reaper at bay for years with with much of what modern medicine could provide, but more importantly with an indomitable spirit and an unflagging optimism that were always his trademark. In fact my uncle Gordy may have been one of the strongest, the finest, and the most kindly souls that it has ever been my pleasure to come across. His gentle spirit and good humor will be missed in ways that I'm sure none of us who knew him can yet comprehend. 

My sympathies (in the unfortunate absence of my presence) go out with my mother and sister to his family out West. And though I am sure that he would wish all of those who loved him to celebrate his life and go forward with our own, his passing marks yet another example of how life insists we move on. You see, he was the last of my uncles on either side of the family, and his passing carries with it the subtle yet convincing message of the fragility of each of our existences. 

For regardless of the conviction that we are still in the prime of our years (and in spite of the almost constant messages to the contrary that our bodies send us), each of gets a small step closer to the end than the beginning with each passing day. Perhaps then the message to uncover in the midst of the anxiety, confusion, and heartache that each move brings us is to treasure each and every day we are granted while dealing with the trials of advancing from one point in life to the next. 

 We must treasure as well, those who have in some way, through friendship or love, touched our lives; and thus become such an vital part of this movement. For in the end, it is this friendship and love that is perhaps the only thing worth carrying with us as we find ourselves moving on ...

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