Another funeral this week. This time a 90 year old father of a friend I grew up with. It was strange to go back to the church where I grew up and had my wedding. I haven’t been back since my father’s funeral. It was a strange, surreal but nice occasion. Remembering amazingly joyous celebrations and sad and painful events. Being able to accept them all and be thankful for all felt like an amazing gift. I enjoyed belting out those old hymns in harmony with my husband and a new friend. These hymns that generations have sung for hundreds of years represent a history and a heritage. Again all these things that are part of my growing and making me unique.
While I really advocate staying in the present and looking toward the future, there are moments when the past must be acknowledged. I am thankful for resolving past issues, so they are not overwhelming or difficult, just there and part of who I am today. With both of my parents gone, I rarely go to these places, but in the past few months there have been several of these times where I am reminded of where I have come from. Many from the adventure of being a grandma, has me remembering both my early mothering experiences and overwhelming appreciation for my mother. I think of the old Norwegian cemetery where my parents are buried. Walking through reading the markers of strong ancestors leaving home and country to forge a new life in an unknown land. These thoughts strengthen me to live my best life and use the past to make my present a clearer place!