Memorial Day

     Today is Memorial Day, a day for remembering those who have passed before us.  A day created to honor soldiers who fought wars and lost lives in the process.  A day that has evolved over the years to include picnics, parades, and the act of placing flowers on graves.

     I haven’t fully embraced the idea of Memorial Day.  Maybe it’s because I never lost a close loved one to war or perhaps because during my school years it meant the beginning of summer more than anything.  Now as an owner of a Minnesota resort business Memorial Day means the beginning of a busy season with no time to remember anything.  

     I think the reason I don’t celebrate Memorial Day is because for me remembering and reflecting is done on an ongoing basis.  I don’t want to sound morbid or negative because that isn’t what it is.  What I mean is that when a person experiences nature on a daily basis it is easier to remember and appreciate all one has had and lost during their lives.

     When the birds are singing before you have even thought about getting out of bed you can’t help but think life is special.  When the light of the full moon shines in my window and the millions of stars shine brightly overhead I remember those who have passed before me and imagine them shining down on me.   When I see the Northern Lights dancing in the sky I think of my mom who passed away almost 12 years ago.  If a hummingbird comes my way then I instantly think of Mike’s Grandma Nola. 

     Nature has a way of cleansing the soul on a regular basis; a hike in the woods, a paddle on a wilderness lake, or just a moment on a quiet road.  I remember the people in my life both past and present, I remember the special moments in my life, and I hold these close yet loosely in my heart ready to experience them again at the call of a loon, the sight of a moose, or a walk in the woods.  Every day can be a day to remember when you surround yourself with the wonders of the woods.

Do not stand at my grave and weep by Mary Frye

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glint on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you wake in the morning hush,
I am the swift, uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there, I did not die!