If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.
If in the morning light I wake,
I pray the path of Love to take.
Who remembers this children’s bedtime prayer? My Swedish grandma taught me only the first four lines. I was always resistant to saying it, terrified that I was praying to die by mistake!
Somewhere along my life the last two lines were revealed. I don’t remember when or by whom. Once I imagined that I had made them up to comfort myself. But, I am sure that someone else thought of them first.
Once those lines of comfort and direction were added, I could and would say the prayer and find peace. Until this week, I had forgotten this prayer completely, for possibly decades.
Tragedies and the ever continuing unexpected keep happening and they seem to be streaming in at the speed of light! I have my theories. I am fond of theorizing. It’s one of my comforts and coping mechanisms. My theories give my mind something to nosh on while my heart is breaking. My theories give my mind someplace to land in the chaos of change.
I have recently arrived at a theory concerning my close personal family and our seemingly continual trials and tribulations in the arena of Illness, Life and Death. I have never thought things like; Why Us? Why Now? But my current theory is leaning toward the concept of Per Capita. I am not making less of the real issues that we are and have been facing. I am merely theorizing that in a large family, tragedy and the unexpected are, per capita, mathematically more likely to occur.
When I glance sideways at the Earth and her People, Our larger Home and Family, and try with all my might to digest and assimilate the ongoing suffering and tragedy that occur every nano-second, I feel no less detached. Information that travels and is accessed at the speed of light makes it impossible Not To Know that Life and Death hang in the balance for All…all the time…and precariously. It’s almost too much to bear.
We are tender now, in our clan. We desire answers and confirmations and healings and meaning. We are not fragile, however. When I think of my ClansFolk, one and all, I am gripped with the most visceral admiration, love and amazement! What a bunch! I have friends that cannot understand the bonds, demands, expectations, issues, squabbles, reconciliations and unending challenges we face together and with each other almost every day. We only drift toward these so-called problems with each other, when we have the luxury of no perceived crisis looming. Underneath any and all conflict we ever face is simply misunderstanding or miscommunication.
Underlying All Else is the Love we share that bonds us to one another so intrinsically that when one of us struggles, we all struggle, asking how and stepping up to help. I have friends who wonder why I allow myself to become so involved in the messier dealings of the family. I have no idea what they are talking about. Firstly, these magnificent beings are not ‘The Family’…they are ‘My Family’! I’ll be the first to admit that living and loving in our Clan can sometimes feel like the worst of things but without reservation it is also The Absolute Best of all lives! Oh it’s messy and passionate and enmeshed and binding and none of us can avoid the attention of the other even though we try at times.. And, Thank God! I am grateful every minute for the blessing of being born into such a tangled twig nest of warm nurturing in-your-face love and resolute decisioned acceptance.
We’re not all the same. We don’t all agree. We are all individuals and span a wide swarth of diverse, eclectic, humorous and serious divides that could separate us. At the same time, we cannot be separated. We refuse to be separated. Even when we have divorced, our former loved ones remain loved ones and in the fold. It takes a lot to escape and only a few have managed. Fools! Just kidding….not. We think it is their loss…but it is also ours. If ever we have loved, we don’t forget it. That cannot be erased only changed.
Our Path Of Love is the One Thing I never want to change. Our family is Love at It’s Most Interesting.
So to the many who have passed from us in these last few years:
We have prayed the Lord your soul to take. And for us who remain to love on, I know in the deepest most precious knowing there is…the code of the heart…that when in the morning light we wake….We pray the path of Love to take. Our Clan makes the effort. Isn’t that what counts? That’s what makes my life, our life, this Life worth living.
Blessed Be to My Clan!
We all know who we are.