I have been on a bit of a social media/technology break for a little while now and it has been wonderful. Every so often it is a good idea to disconnect, go within, reflect, and tune back into the simplicity of life. I have been surrounded by many stories of illness and death recently, some pretty close to home, and it's always a stark reminder of the impermanence that is life. There is nothing more universal than the fact that we are all born and we will all die yet regardless of this, death seems to take us all by surprise. As I remember the loss of my very special super Mario, seven years ago today, I am filled with gratitude. I am blessed to have had such a special person in my life – a man who was not only my cousin, my brother, but also a treasured friend. I am grateful that I was able to be with him until he made his way to a new world and while my heart misses him so dearly, I find comfort in the ways he reminds me that he is always with me. Mario said something to me during his illness that has stuck with me since. Of all the things he missed, he missed the little ones. He very much wanted back the routine of simply getting up and having a job to go to. He missed having a reason to get dressed and ready in the morning. So as I think about him and honor him on his 42nd birthday I do so by loving a little more, everyone around me and remembering life is a gift, and a short one at that. And when I find myself frustrated by that early morning alarm or those arduous and monotonous tasks I will remember that too is a blessing.
Photo: Grand Ferry Park - Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York