Fundraising Touches Two Worlds
I was standing in the dining room one evening when my cousin called.
Bad news. His mother, my aunt, had just died. Unexpectedly.
After that moment when nothing you say can possibly make sense, he gave me the details. She'd been healthy, active, busy. Then she had a bad reaction to some medication. The kind of thing that when it's someone you don't know, you say, "It was just one of those things." I listened almost hungrily, as we do at times like that — not wanting the details, yet somehow anxious to know everything.
It was one of those this-can't-be-happening moments that happen more and more often as we get older.
I leaned against the table, felt the cool wood under my hand, the solidity of the floor under my feet. Around me were the four walls and the furniture I live with every day — so large and real compared to the small, staticky voice of my cousin coming through the phone.
The greater reality
Suddenly everything came into sharp focus, as if something had fallen away from my eyes. I could see — as if for the first time — that these solid things around me were like breeze-tossed mist compared to the greater reality of the people in my life: the family, friends and companions who have shaped me. The friendly guy across the street whose name I can't remember. The lady who makes my tall soy mocha every morning and says, "Happy Monday," even on Tuesday.
And my aunt — who knew me from the day I was born, who helped me see that whatever you do, you can, you must do it with joy and passion. Memory everlasting.
These people, they are the real floor we stand on, the walls that shelter us, the furniture where we rest.