Joy and Sorrow Interwoven

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

 We woke up early on September 11th and drove to Monticello Mountain to hike the Saunders-Monticello trail. It was a quiet morning with fall heavy in the air. We parked at the Michie Tavern and I couldn't help but snap some photos of the morning sun peeking through the leaves. It was such a beautiful, calm morning. We were in Charlottesville for my grandmother's funeral and, although it was a sad occasion, I kept thinking that it was only sad for us. For Memaw, there is just joy and peace. I was trying to put words to this when I read Kerstin Magnuson's post on Trouve this morning about embracing the permanent. She explains that we grieve change when that change means something permanent, like a death in the family. But, really, death isn't a permanent change because life was never permanent to begin with. What's permanent are the things we take with us and hold in our hearts — the things that never change.

I remember walking the whole Saunders-Monticello trail with Memaw when we were little. I also remember passing the Michie Tavern with Grandaddy when he would take us to visit the mountain-side cemetery where his parents are buried, directly across from the tavern. Now a stone on that hillside bears Memaw and Grandaddy's name as well. But isn't it wonderful to think that this life (or that hillside) wasn't their final destination and, even though the loss of their lives feels permanent to us, death isn't permanent for them.

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