Why this day is monumental

Today is the day — two years ago — Hubby left his cancer-ridden, morphine-pumped, lymphedema-swollen body for heaven.

Today I helped a friend pack up her kitchen, and unpack in her new home. The new kitchen — the heart of the house — is now open for service. And I loved that I had a part in that.

Today, I sat in a coffee shop infused with comforting aromas, writing and enjoying a Chai tea, courtesy of my niece who sent a generous gift card.



Photo credit: Unsplash


Today, I’m doing some preliminary preparations for an upcoming road trip. Sis-in-law Cheryl asked if I’d checked the weather. Um, no … should I?  (Hubby is sighing deeply. Or rolling his eyes.)

Today, thoughtful kind uplifting smart beautiful women — friends, daughter, nieces, sisters-in-law — called, texted, posted to Facebook. Hubby’s favorite sister wrote this on my FB page:

It’s a bitter sweet day. Wouldn’t it be great to peek into heaven to see what Gary is up to? It would be hard to wish him back; even if he was completely healed, he would still be a little miffed if we brought him back after what he has seen and is experiencing.

Today, I’m having fabulous fish tacos from Spork, an eclectic restaurant on Newport in my hometown of Bend, Oregon.

Today, I’m counting the so-much good in my life, despite so much loss.

Which makes today a monumentally epic sit-up-and-pay-attention towering sort-of day. Not because it is the anniversary of my husband’s death. But because it is the anniversary of remembering a good life. And because it’s a day in which I’m choosing to live forward and well and with expectation and a gratitude-full heart.

A few thoughts from a blog I posted early in 2015:

I miss this good man. Every day. But what if we have a choice in how we suffer? What if gratitude helps us see the good while struggling with the hard? What if, when we face hard things, we could come out on the other side wiser, kinder, stronger, more compassionate, and therefore more beautiful? We do. It does. We can.

If this is true — that suffering and loss can be this beauty-making, wise-making, kind-making phenomenon — then would we embrace the hard instead of kicking against it?

Why, yes. Yes, I think we would.

I’d love to hear from you. What hard thing has made you wiser, kinder, more compassionate?

P.S. If you found this post encouraging or know someone who’s struggling with loss, please share, tweet or pin!


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  1. Dear Marlys, I came your website today and you have my utmost admiration and respect. I am truly sorry for your loss. We lost someone 2 days ago, not a spouse, nevertheless someone close. You speak with such honesty, dignity and compassion, and it’s personal. And thousands of others will benefit from your words. Thank you for being so generous. Paul

    • Oh, Paul, I’m so sorry for your loss. I pray that you are surrounded by people who love you as you walk through this hard thing. Thank you for your kind words. Blessings.

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