What we call the beginning is often the end
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from.
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
~T.S. Eliot: Four Quartets,
Quartet No. 4, Little Gidding, V
It’s been a difficult month.
Exactly two weeks after celebrating the 10th anniversary of arriving in Santiago de Compostela, my Camino buddy and dear friend Pat Stankus completed her earthly pilgrimage. She fought a courageous battle against brain cancer for a year.
I visited with Pat the week of our anniversary. Together we laughed telling stories of our Camino de Santiago pilgrimage to every nurse, aid and hospital staff that came into her room—and together we cried discussing our feelings about her death.
Even writing those words seems strange, like describing the plot of someone else’s novel.
Three days after Pat’s funeral in Austin, I began another medical pilgrimage back in Oklahoma, this one with my Dad, who is still in the hospital.
I will blog as often as I can, but I will first need a little breathing space to digest all these intense and significant emotions. Thank you in advance for your prayers!
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The Lord GOD will wipe away the tears from all faces;
The reproach of his people he will remove from the whole earth; for the LORD has spoken.
On that day it will be said:
"Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us!This is the LORD for whom we looked;
let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!"
~Isaiah 25: 8-9
from the OT reading I proclaimed at Pat’s funeral Mass
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They cut me down and I leapt up high
I am the life that will never, never die
I'll live in you if you'll live in me
I am the Lord of the dance, said he
Dance, dance, wherever you may be
I am the lord of the dance, said he
And I lead you all, wherever you may be
And I lead you all in the dance, said he
~Lord of the Dance,
recessional song at Pat’s funeral Mass
The Dubliners: "Lord of the Dance" video