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Who Watches Over Us?

 When I was younger, my Mom used to tell me that if I didn't find something to believe in, some kind of faith, she worried I would become lost. Which was ironic, because she was perhaps as agnostic as anyone. She didn't attend church, didn't believe in God, and certainly didn't follow the tenants of any organized religion.

She'd been raised by two people who travelled the world for their work (installing and providing training for medical equipment on cruise lines). And so she was a child of everywhere. Perhaps her faith was made up of a little of everywhere too.

I was not religious when she died. I don't believe in heaven or hell or anything as concrete as that. I believe in souls, and think reincarnation is possible. I also think that sometimes souls take a little while to get there. That they stick around - wherever they might be - to keep an eye on us for a while. And when they are ready to truly rest, they come back as someone new. 

My Mom, I believe, will very much need this rest after she has spent the last few years working over-time (do souls work overtime?) to keep my daughter safe. Just the little things. The extra moment I had before she wandered towards the stairs (time for gates, kid!); the pause she took before she picked up something that should not have fallen on the floor. Things that I knew were my Mom watching over and going "kids are hard, let me help how I can." 

I do not think I ever needed organized faith. I think my Mom just knew that I was going to be out in the world, on my own, very young. And she knew I would need to have something to believe in when times were hard. 

The work I do is hard. Practicing estates planning and administration means I sometimes see people at their best (We just had a baby! We just bought a house!), but I also see people at their worst. They've lost a parent, a sibling, or - truly the worst - a child. And it is hard to not let the grief of the world consume you. 

Do all things happen for a reason? Perhaps not. But when my grandmother died, prompting me to return to the west coast to assist, and my mom had her stroke not four days later? I knew that there was something at work that had caused the chain of events to bring me home. To make sure I was there. To have those few good days before tragedy, and to be there with my family through it. 

Some people are called to their religion. And some of us just need a little faith. Because we are human, and we don't want to be alone.