Friday, May 30

On May 9th, an anniversary

On the morning of the anniversary of the day Ben went to Heaven, things started out normally enough for me.  This wasn't too surprising, being as dates in and of themselves don't hold a lot of significance for me (Ben was the one who remembered our wedding anniversary) and also because I'm pretty good at emotional detachment; though less so lately.  Anecdote: a friend recommended that I watch "Star Trek: Generations" - the movie - because Data gets an Emotion Chip and maybe I'd be able to relate.  I did and I laughed and felt very emotionally intelligent compared to an android.  This is why Geeks are good friends.

Anyway, in the afternoon I got a message from dear friend Chanda, sending she and her husband Chris's love and prayers.  I was touched and started to reply, thinking that in addition to her natural empathetic nature she could relate because a couple of years ago she had a difficult miscarriage.  And in a flash, I had a vision of Ben holding Chanda and Chris's baby.  Of Ben rocking the baby, telling the baby about its parents, waiting for us to come and meet them.  And then of the several friend's babies who never experienced life out of the womb, and how Ben wanted to be a father and that it would be just like him to treasure our friend's children until they met.**  All of this I wanted to write back to Chanda, but I was crying too hard (she heard from me later that day).  It was kind of a relief, and meaningful in that moment.

That night, my roommate and I watched "Up".  Since she'd never seen that movie before.  According to a couple of family members, this was ill-advised timing. 
But for me, it was actually the perfect way to celebrate Ben's life! 

In "Up," Ellie has the spirit of adventure and longs to travel and explore!  This was just like Ben.  He wanted to get a jeep and drive to the ghost towns in the Colorado mountains.  He wanted to buy a cow and butcher it himself.  He wanted to go around the world, helping missionaries with their computers.  But also like Ellie, because of the difficulties of life his plans were thwarted.  However, it's revealed at the end of the movie that she was satisfied with the adventures of her life - they were just different than she planned.  Ben also had all sorts of adventures he wouldn't have chosen, from canoeing around trees and a dead pig in a river in Texas (my fault), to encouraging and advising people around the world with the platform cancer gave him and the purpose and joy God gave him.  And even better than in "Up" Ben's life in this sad world is over, but his real life is just beginning.

** This mental flash doesn't express any specific theological belief in "the age we actually are in Heaven," or even in "what Ben is doing right now (if time even has the same meaning?)"  These are interesting topics to discuss, but I see this image as simply a beautiful possibility.


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