My Nanny Rose passed away last week. I know. How can this be? Nanny Rose. Perpetual 40 year old. She was a wonderful Nan, tall, beautiful. Strong.
On the day she passed I admired my favorite artist at work with the orange sky.
In another direction the early evening offered the sunlit moon.
I grabbed my camera, because I love to capture and went off sunset hunting.
Some chase storms, I chase sunsets.
In this I thought of Rosie, and all of the sunsets she had seen in her life. Faithful. Constant.
I looked up to the hills where I saw the remnants of fire.
And that image was the one that struck me most.
Yes the world still turns, fiery sunsets faithfully happen and the same bright moon rises.
But the flame of Rosie lives on and burns in each of our hearts.
We live on with a wonderful legacy of how to do family well, of knowing how to celebrate, and an unconditional love which supported and accepted us all.
There is nowhere in the world I would have wanted to be last week other than Stourbridge.
So I flew home to be with my family.
Tears flowed as quickly as laughter came as this cycle found its way round many times.
I walked into Nan’s house and enjoyed catching up with her lifetime scattered throughout. I touched Nan’s stuff, those things, trinkets and ornaments and pictures that make Nan’s house what it is.
This time differently though, through the eyes of grief. I savored that moment.
And as we gathered to say goodbye, we did it as only our family could do. Close.
With my lovely brothers shouting shotgun as they got in the funeral car.
With my Mom admiring the flowers and not knowing that Nan was part of a cards club. Then realizing she was looking at another’s flowers.
With all the people, who you don’t see for years, but who played a beautiful part in our Rosie’s story.
As she did ours.
So here I am at 4am. Jetlag laughing at my confused state.
I soon flew home again. To be with my family.
Home – there’s no place like it right?
And now. The home of all homes.
The eternal destination or as Lewis puts it ‘the secret signature of the soul’.
I am sure of our heavenly home is within reach, the one we all journey towards – we glimpse – yet can’t quite grasp it. But our homesick hearts know it is there.
Until one day… when we will not only see it, but taste, feel, hear and experience it.
So, until then, I ask. ‘Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven’.
Dedicated to Charlotte Rose Homer. My Nan.
“I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now…Come further up, come further in!” ― C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle.
Thank you for reading, you are loved,