Sherin Rose Bowen, 71, Stevens Point, WI, passed into eternity late Friday, March 20, 2009 at St. Luke’s Hospital, Milwaukee, WI, following a head injury sustained in Managua, Nicaragua five days previous.
Tonight’s theme had its roots in mortality, I think. Something like that. A friend of a friend who went missing a few days ago, and was found in the bay this morning. A little girl, Sophie, who made it into the world and three months later developed a brain tumor. She is the only bright place in her family’s life.
My grandma’s name is Sherin Rose Bowen, and she was born on February 28, 1938 in Medford, WI to Arthur and June (Peterson) Schneider, and it took me a long time to be able to focus on what was, instead of what is not.
Step back to where God sees time, right, and we see our four dimensions laid out, all of it on the table at once. From here, directionality is less of a thing. We move forward through time, and a moment of loss bleeds pain into our future, but off-stage it looks only like some parts of the timeline are illuminated more brightly, more particularly, than others.
My dad left the research farm that he’d invested in for twenty-odd years, and moved with my mom to Alaska. Those years still exist, all the good things that he built are still there, in time. Walking away didn’t mean giving up; walking away meant that he had finished.
Our awareness doesn’t work in the other direction, though. We mourn after a thing is lost, not before it arrives, but I think the two are not substantially different.
Grandma lived richly. She gave and she loved and she wove and she cried and she strived and she loved. She built a cabin, with my grandpa, and she called it her Shangri-La. Her loom was on the lower level, looking out over the lake, and she had a dream of being there, weaving, while I played the piano and spent time with her.
I still can’t think about that without crying. There was so much that should have been. But at the same time, she wouldn’t have been her, in her fullness, living as she did, if she didn’t have those dreams. And it’s alright that not all of them were made real, in the flesh. I don’t think there’s ever a good time to go, for the hopeful.
Little Sophie, little girl. I’ve never met her. I’ve never had a daughter, and I have a taste of what her family must be feeling, but only a taste. From what I’m told, though, Sophie coming into the world is light, and hope, for her mother. I feel kind of ashamed to say this, or think it, I wish for no loss at all, but even if Sophie only has these few months in their arms, I’m still glad she has this time to shine.
All that has been, and all that will be, is. Nothing is gone.