Connect and Disconnect

Life is precious.

Life is particularly so because of the connections we make. From the beginning that connection between the mother and the child in the womb. It’s more than a physical connection. The connection is also there as the father notes the child that is a product of him and what has come from him.

Those connections develop and grow as other people are involved in the life of that baby. Siblings, other family members, childhood friends, classmates, university comrades, work colleagues, neighbours, spouse, children, regulars in the pub or the club and so on and so forth. Connections to one degree or the other. The more we know the deeper the connection. What makes it all the more precious is how dynamic and alive it is as long as we connect with the other person and they reciprocate. The laughter, the misunderstanding, the shared experiences, the questions, the knowing looks all of that – makes the connection deep and real.

Live is precious.

Which makes death all the more final. Death is the ultimate disconnect. It’s one thing to hold a grudge against a supposed loved one. What makes that grudge all the more painful is that it enacts something that will actually take place at the point of death. For when one dies the disconnect takes place.

We can only connect to the memory of the person and indeed that’s how we endeavour to keep ourselves ‘immortal’ by the power of the memory. That’s why many long to leave a lasting legacy, make themselves famous as others write about them in history books. Statues and monuments, tribute events, eulogies, poems, videos, photos and services in memory to people in a bid to establish the name, the memory and the person in place. Talk of them being in heaven looking down on us. Trips to the grave stone to ‘talk to them’. To take solace in some aspect of a connection. Yet the truth remains the great disconnect has taken place. That disconnect is necessarily painful.

Each feeling of disconnect should spur us to truly value what connections are still available. Each disconnect should motivate us to treasure even more the depths and quality of connections we have the capacity to make. For those connections reinforce something beautiful about being alive.

It should do that. Yet sadly, some of us get so hurt by failures that our hearts become hardened and cold. Whatever connections we have made become frosty and distant. The desire not to feel hurt again overwhelms the desire to truly feel alive again as we slowly let the winter of the soul freeze up anything that required heat to exist. The smiles are worn. The frowns set in. The eyebrows furrowed permanently.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Quality connections are a big part of what makes life worth living. So we should celebrate those connections while we can.

Life is precious.

For His Name’s Sake

Shalom

C. L. J. Dryden

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