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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Grace Pass

It was a day no one looks forward too. The door to my office opened and my friend sat down letting out a deep sigh. We talked for a short time then I picked up my keys, stood and asked... "Are you ready to do this?" She just nodded and we left. We pulled into an empty parking lot, parked the car and with tears streaming down our cheeks, stoically walked toward the entrance. When we entered we were directed to a small room past the entrance. We walked in, put our arms around each other and took in the sight. Reality settled in as we slowly made our way to our friends side. She was in beautiful peace, no longer in pain, no longer struggling inside her earthly shell. She was gone, but she was very much present, so we sat. We sat and cried, then we sat and talked. We started at the beginning and worked our way through every precious memory we had. We remembered the sound of her voice, her laughter, her unconditional love, her vivacious presence, we remembered it all. Finally the tears ceased and the chuckles began, turning into belly laughs before we left. Two hours later we bid her good night and headed home. As we walked out the front doors I turned to my friend and said.... "She totally enjoyed our visit." She laughed and said she was just thinking the same thing. I can hear her saying... "Good Lord, those two girls are the only people on earth who would come hang out with me at the funeral home and carry on like it was a slumber party." I think that's why she loved us, and knowing she got us is why we loved her.... So much. Life has a funny way of bringing people into your life who for no rhyme or reason you just click with. There was a significant age difference between us... You would have never known. I could fall apart in front of her over something that I was certain was going to send me to hell in a hand basket and she loved me still. The last time I fell apart in her arms over something I was beating myself up over, she just smiled and said... "Honey, you haven't done anything wrong. God still loves you." Not only that, but she still loved me. I call it giving someone a Grace Pass and at times I need volumes of them. I want to be THAT person. I want to be the one who loves wholly, no strings attached with a Christ Like unconditional love. I want to impact someones life so much they want to sit at my side in the funeral home and share stories and laugh and know that a part of me is with them enjoying the memories even while I explore my new digs on the other side. I want to be someone who hands out Grace Passes, because I know I've received a ton of my own. We were laughing on the way home about our innocence when we first became friends with her. She was the older wiser mentor and we were young and uncorrupted by cynicism of life. 20 years down the road, both of us have edges that are slightly frayed, moments of unchecked expression and we've long given up being hailed Mother of the year." Can you believe how far we've come since we first met her?" my friend asked... "What would she say if she could hear us now?"  She would give us a Grace Pass, maybe a little wink and tell us she loved us. That's exactly what she would do.

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