This is not a travel blog, but Kathy reminds me exactly why I write about travel. Are we experiencing and thriving in moments now or cautiously looking ahead or regretfully behind? For a travel story, I choose a scene, a sound, or a feeling that captures the essence of a person or place, that puts a memory in my heart for safe-keeping.
I am clinging to a moment, (a scene) at Irish Fest, last September on a crisp, sunny, fall day on Heritage Landing; I can replay it like a YouTube video in my mind. Kathy sits next to me on the pavilion steps, as we get ready for a group photo. She leans on my shoulder, grasps my hand and squeezes more tightly, as if to remind me to pay attention. She squeezes all our hands, smiles at me, at all of us. Kathy’s been battling cancer for a while, but she’s having a good day.
It’s all wrapped up in that snapshot moment, the important, really noteworthy, soul-marking stuff. Kathy is not frowning, not sad – she’s smiling. She knows that it’s not her place to keep time. It’s in a grander set of hands and not for any of us to decide. Time is not long or short, it is now.
We lost her soul to the heavens and we are left with moments – a reminder that all we have is contained in the soft click of a camera lens. It’s that simple and pure. It’s wrapped up in a wisp of a Lake Michigan breeze, the touch of a hand, the flash of a grin, a lean on a shoulder, a note on the counter, or the last thought before sleep takes us.
I am grateful for many Kathy moments but one is all I need… she’s marked my soul with her life and spirit.
Kathy Rabach: Sept. 19, 1965 – March 14, 2015