Lessons from death

I recently had to face some unexpected illnesses and deaths in my family. 

Sickness and death are powerful reminders of the impermanence, fragility, and mystery of life - about how little time we all have, how little control we have, how we are a small transient part of a grand timeless machinery, and how little we know. 

They are also powerful reminders of the colorfulness and meaning in every individual life, regardless of how transient or small it is in the grand scheme. 

We fondly remember the departed's endearing and unique traits. We recall and cherish their remarkable or amusing stories. We feel grateful for their kindness, love, and joy. We celebrate their path and accomplishments. We learn from their wisdom and missteps. We mourn missed interactions, their unfulfilled dreams, the void of their absence, and for those who are close to them. 

Death teaches us what we value, gives us the urgency to prioritize meaningful pursuits and interactions, and to live free in our short lives.