Nothing and Everything Changes

  Nothing and Everything Changes


Once a week I call my mother, and check to see what is happening in her life. Her usual comment is … “I wish I had something to tell you, but nope nothing new here, same as last week.”

How does a string of “same as last week” turn into 90 years?

Last weekend, I went hiking on a 17 degrees warm Saturday, a beautiful hike along the Elbow River, and then snow and ice greeted me Sunday morning. I might add that this had been predicted, but on Sat I did not want to believe that the very next day I would be looking for hot chocolate and a fire place. That Sat as I walked the shores of the Elbow River, I could see the devastation from the spring flood … uprooted trees, and rocks along the shorelines that had not been there before. The one hundred year flood, not to be repeated in my time, forever altered the landscape.

Life takes on a routine, and when death and floods pay unexpected visits, daily rituals lose their meaning, and the very purpose for living is challenged.

Two weeks ago, I attended the funeral of my friends’ son … their lives have forever changed. And yet nothing is new in the big picture … birth-life-death, it continues on as it has for thousands of years. But my friends are left to deal with the after math of grief.

Hiking along the banks, I was reminded of their loss, and the struggle to rebuild life after such devastation. The closer you are to the high waves, the more difficult it is. It takes a community to help get through the healing of grief, although the scars remain forever.


In his book Grace Disguised, Jerry Sitser says that loss enlarges the soul.

Sometimes I don’t want my heart and soul to have to grow through more loss … I want to dance … I want to laugh … I want to sing …

We are called to weep with those who weep and to laugh with those who rejoice.

There is a beauty in both.

Autumn Prayer for the Loss of a Son

Eight days ago, my friends lost their son.  The next morning I sat by the river, feeling my pain, their pain, the accumulated pain of loss, too many children gone before their time. And the leaves  rained down as I sat on my bench, and the river water flowed … flowing, dropping, life-cycles and ancient rhythms continue endlessly . . .


Fallen Leaves

Another leaf falls

while one hangs on for autumn splendor

dropped from a lower branch, less travel time.

Rebirth, the unfulfilled promise, waits for its time

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust

Another child gone and winter sets in.

I pray an early spring for those in the season of sorrow.

A line from his tribute: We are left with a raw gaping agonizing hole in our hearts which nothing can fill, even though we know he is safe in God’s arms.

Human tears are older than the rain.