This morning I woke up to some very sad news: a childhood classmate lost her 25 year old son in a tragic car accident two days ago. Her father was one of the most respected (and feared) sports teacher in the school that I went to when I was much younger and she was such a shy and quiet girl. I met her again years later when I visited my brother in Toronto. She had grown into a lovely mother of two boys with a very generous heart – one of the kindest and sweetest people I have met in a long time. Her husband too is a very nice person and her father now lives with her. We met each other a couple of times after that whenever I visited my brother in Canada. Unfortunately this July we couldn’t meet when I was in Toronto, she was in the US but I met her father and we had a lovely time together with some other ex-students of this school who were also in Toronto.
I was planning to write a special post for Thanksgiving but because of what I learnt this morning, this post is different than what I had planned.
On this eve of Thanksgiving, I am acutely aware and thankful for the gift of life. I am reminded that each day is a gift from God, a gift that I should not take lightly or squander away on things and even on some people. Those who know me well, know that I am someone who feels deeply – both joy and pain. I was once advised by someone (who meant well) that I should learn to “protect” my heart so that I don’t feel so much pain when someone hurts me. Today I am thankful for the pain I feel so deeply for my friend – it reminds me that I am alive and have not hardened my heart. I would rather feel and hurt deeply than live a superficial happy-go-lucky life or have superficial relationships.
This Thanksgiving I have a hope: that if we know someone who is hurting, we will show them in some concrete way that we care while we are still able to. We may not have a tomorrow to show them that.
So even though my heart is very heavy today, I am thankful for the precious gift of life. It is my hope and prayer that I will never take it for granted.
Happy Thanksgiving to my friends all over the world who are celebrating it.