Prayer: We give him back to you, O Lord, who first gave him to us, yet as you did not lose him in the giving, so we do not lose him by his return. For what is yours is ours also, if we belong to you. Love is undying, and life is unending, and the boundary of this mortal life is but a horizon, and a horizon is nothing save the limit of our sight.
No more suffering. You’ve gone to the light, home at last.
We met soon after I moved to California in 1984 and of course, then you were a big part of the world I lived in. From the start, I felt that we saw each other clearly, that we knew each other at the core and maybe, in another life, we did.
I remember your generosity of spirit and bonhomie, always a fine host and a gentleman; always warm and pleasant and funny. I can still see you in your deck shoes and summer shorts piloting your boat on hot days at the Delta while the kids water-skiied. I always appreciated the good career counsel you gave me; the way you laughed and your skilled hand at making cocktails. In my imagination I can picture what you must have been like back in the day, playing music at the Jersey shore.
I always understood why she fell in love with you and stayed in love with you through thick and thin. I know you always loved her, too, right to the end.
This was a hard life for you, replete with painful lessons for you and also hard lessons for others.
But then, the tough lives always teach us the most, if we are open to the lessons.
Now, you’re in a place of harmony and peace. No pain. I like the idea of everyone who has gone before welcoming you home, and your surprise at what you found.
So, Godspeed, J. You’re the first of us to set out on the next great adventure. We will all meet again, and next time, things will be different. For all of us.
See you then.