Saturday, June 7, 2014

Gone to the next adventure

The morning was cool for June and a bit cloudy.  Before I finished my rounds at the local farmers' market, the clouds turned darker bringing the first of several small showers.  Undeterred, I made the planned trip to the national cemetery and to spend some quiet time walking and remembering.

The most poignant part of the cemetery for me is seeing the headstones marked only with Unknown U. S. Soldier.  I always wonder about families somewhere whose loved ones are buried here.  Unknown. Unnamed.  Whether sentiment or reality, I think my best photographs from the national cemetery have been taken while surrounded by these unknown soldiers.

But today, for the first time, I saw a headstone that stopped me in my tracks. Surrounded by headstones with epitaphs for beloved wives (those who chose to be buried here are memorialized on the reverse side of the soldier's headstone) is a headstone with the words Gone to the Next Adventure. It's perfect. It captures everything about living life to the fullest, accepting transience, and embracing the chance to learn here before moving on. And a relationship that honored not just this adventure but also the next one.

I hope my time as a mother, daughter, sister, friend, lover, or teacher has some positive impact on others; I know for certain these roles have taught me much and provided more adventure than I have often (too often, perhaps) been willing to embrace.  But I love the thought of a next great adventure and rushing to embrace it when this adventure concludes.


Other cemetery visits:
My cup runneth over 
It's rarely the one we think
The dark side