What a wonderful Day of the Dead celebration we had last Sunday at UMB! I want to thank everyone who participated and helped make it a beautiful ceremony. I especially want to acknowledge and thank Kathy, Kay, Larry, and Walter for sharing personal stories about those they were honoring and remembering. The tributes to your loved ones were beautiful and humorous and touched us all. I hope you found the sharing to be helpful and supportive as you move through the grief process. Over the years that I have been doing the Day of the Dead service, I have witnessed powerful healings take place, and I felt the healing energy flowing powerfully this past Sunday as well.
Today, November 2, is Dia de los Muertos. As you perhaps take a moment to reflect on and remember the loved ones you have lost, know that you are doing so in the company of folks all over Mexico, the United States, and some Latin American countries, as they, too, honor their own loved ones today. Below is a picture of the small altar I created in my own home, which contains photographs of my beloved grandma, my great-grandma, my Uncle Jim and Uncle Doug, and several pets. I enjoy dusting off the photographs and lovingly placing them among the skulls and flowers as I remember my loved ones with fondness. I am so grateful to the Mexican culture for giving me this beautiful celebration that helps me keep the memory of my loved ones alive.
I also want to thank all of you for braving the subject of death and dying with me again this year. I know it’s not an easy topic to think about or talk about, and it has been challenging for me this year as well. But I appreciate your willingness to show up and to engage the topic. I truly believe that, as uncomfortable as it is, it is so healing for us to talk openly about death. I hope you benefited from our exploration of the topic and that it will be an impetus for ongoing discussions at home, with your own loved ones and friends. It takes courage to face our own mortality and realize the impermanence of life, but the benefits are great. I am grateful for the courage and support of our community in which we are learning to grieve and heal together.