Bathed in Love

     Last week I had the honor of being asked to eulogize our fallen friend Jean. As I listened to the nine or so other speakers my heart filled with pride for learning of Jean's legacy. Many of her friends from across the span of her seventy some years stood to share their most precious thoughts about her. We heard about her independence, her feisty spirit, and her commitment to raising the children in her life; her kids, niece, and grandchildren. What resonated with me the most were all the stories of Jean's unconditional love for people.
     I often write of the importance of celebrating each day as if it were our last. The truth is we just do not know. I believe that it is important to not take even a single breath for granted. Jean and her husband, Jerry, spent the night with us last March, and her health seemed fine. Then a month later, it turned and she was unexpectedly gone by the end of April. Her legacy, however, lives on. Her 19 year old grandson Liam, in particular, talked about how lucky he was to have had such an involved and affectionate grandma; that she was foundational in his growing up years, and that she will always live on in his heart.
Jean and Jerry visit in March
     Once again I am reminded of the quote: People may not remember exactly what you did or what you said, but they will always remember how you made them feel. Jean had the talent of ensuring that her family and friends felt like they were the most important people in her life, and I think they were. She bathed them in love as she listened and cared.

     Jerry shared with us that toward the end Jean said that she would make herself known through a white feather. He reports now discovering a rather constant sighting of white feathers tucked in interesting spots along his path. After the memorial, he took his grandchildren to the beach. Not surprisingly, there was a white feather on the sand. Standing on the warm sand at Seal Beach, as Jerry lifted the feather, Liam, exclaimed, "I'm worried about the bird from which grandma is getting all these feathers!"

     Jean was one of those rare people who made you feel good just by being in the room with her. She may be gone from this earth but not from our hearts. Her passing reinforces for me once again the importance of celebrating each day we have in this life.

     I am home from a vigorous trip to Japan with my son and his wife and their number four daughter, and I am resting up boogie boarding at San Clemente Pier. 
June Visit to Japan
Boogie Boarding at the Pier