a hundred thousand funerals

This is what life becomes, I realize now.

A hundred thousand funerals.

A hundred thousand absences.

A hundred thousand good byes.

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“Caed mille failte” is the traditional Irish greeting meaning “a hundred thousand welcomes.”

And this, too, is what life becomes: a hundred thousand welcomes to the tears, the memories, the anguish of hollowness.

Death is a closure, the ultimate ending.

Life is an opening, a continual beginning.

As we live on after our daughter’s death, we open to all that is Life.

In every moment of life, we open to the pain.

In every moment of life, we begin again with the grieving.

In every moment of joy, life is infused with unbearable sorrow.

A hundred thousand welcomes to the one hundred thousand funerals.

Open and willing to it all.

This is what life becomes, I realize now.

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