A Gray Day, Everlasting Light, and a Celebration of Life

We headed south along Lake Roosevelt today to attend the funeral of J. W., my student's mother. The whole day started out gray. The sky was cloudy and gray. The lake was a dark color. Our mood was even a bit gray.

We arrived at the Catholic Church in Inchelium to a large crowd of family and friends gathered together to show their love and celebrate the life of J.W. My student A. rang the church bells calling everyone to come inside. Another student carried flowers behind the casket. My student B. that lost his mother was brave and strong as he stood by his family greeting people and giving hugs. I have mentioned before that just being in church puts me at peace. Today I was peace as I listened to people talk about her life, her legacy, and her love. A gray day was filled with everlasting light. This was the poem that was placed so fittingly in the program:

My Dear Loved Ones

These words I wish to say.

I'm home up here in Heaven

and here is where I'll stay.

My pain and struggle is over;

I'll rest in peace today.

Although I know you'll grieve for me,

be strong, it's going to be OK.

I'm in my eternal home

where there's everlasting light.

I'm in the arms of loved ones,

holding me so tight.

Please try to carry on your life

with me inside your heart.

Someday you'll be rewarded

and we'll never have to part.

I'm glad we had so many years

together you and I.

You filled my life with happiness

and gave me wings to fly.

Just keep the faith; believe my words,

you'll see the morning light.

And know that I am with you

every morning, noon , and night.

Ruth Ann Mahaffey

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