Sheila Augusta Klint lived a full life from August 2, 1928 through October 4, 2013. While I celebrate her life with family and reflect on many memories there is sadness within me and there is also joy and peace. My grandmother lived the life she always envisioned. At 16 she received permission from her parents to leave the comforts of home in NYC so that she could become a musician and see the world. She played the upright bass with a jazz band, and experienced many travels. In her adult life she worked for the NY Telephone Company and one of many hobbies was sewing. She knew that when she retired she wanted to return to her place of birth and in the early 90’s moved to St. Croix, USVI.
My grandmother was many things to many people and while there are many who may not have good stories to tell, the legacy she leaves behind for me and my mother is priceless. Sheila was a woman filled with courage and I’ve always known her to be fearless. If you didn’t like my grandmother it was because you couldn’t pull the wool over her eyes and if you crossed her, you can best believe she would handle you. She is one of few people I know that I can honestly say did everything she set out to accomplish in life. Even this year she was still designing clothes and sewing without patterns. She still wanted to take classes at the university to learn how to use computers. “You have to constantly feed and stimulate the brain” was amongst many of her mottos. Among all the life lessons she has taught me, what stands out most is that she worked hard in order to have the experiences she wanted and she wanted the same for me. She always said to me “Live your life, Go get it. Enjoy what is yours to have”.
Honestly, during this time there is not much grieving for me to do. I am grateful for her lessons in tenacity and in living a life filled with experiences that I choose to have. I am blessed to carry on her legacy and to be a descendant of such strength and resilience. She is not missed because her spirit will always reside in me and she will always be there when I need her, just in a different way. I am what I am today because of her endurance.
Thank you to all for your prayers and support during this time. As I have been present to watch the circumstances unfold, Gods work never ceases to amaze me and so many people have been placed in my life and my family’s life at the right time. My mother was able to be by her side and help her transition and prepare for her next journey. I’ve never been prouder of my mom as I am in this moment, this has been a difficult time for us both and as we continue to live in Gods grace we will carry on the torch that is for us to share with the world.
I love you all and in the final words my grandmother always ended our conversations with, “huggie, huggie, kissie, kissie” xoxoxoxo
“It is truly a great cosmic paradox that one of the best teachers in all of life turns out to be death. No person or situation could ever teach you as much as death has to teach you. While someone could tell you that you are not your body, death shows you. While someone could remind you of the insignificance of the things that you cling to, death takes them all away in a second. While people can teach you that men and women of all races are equal and that there is no difference between the rich and the poor, death instantly makes us all the same.”
“Take a moment to look at the things you think you need. Look at how much time and energy you put into various activities. Imagine if you knew you were going to die within a week or a month. How would that change things? How would your priorities change? How would your thoughts change? Think honestly about what you would do with your last week. What a wonderful thought to contemplate. Then ponder this question: If that’s really what you would do with your last week, what are you doing with the rest of your time? Wasting it? Throwing it away? Treating it like it’s not something precious? What are you doing with life? That is what death asks you.
Let’s say you’re living life without the thought of death, and the Angel of Death comes to you and says, “Come, it’s time to go.” You say, “But no. You’re supposed to give me a warning so I can decide what I want to do with my last week. I’m supposed to get one more week.” Do you know what Death will say to you? He’ll say, “My God! I gave you fifty-two weeks this past year alone. And look at all the other weeks I’ve given you. Why would you need one more? What did you do with all those?” If asked that, what are you going to say? How will you answer? “I wasn’t paying attention… I didn’t think it mattered.” That’s a pretty amazing thing to say about your life.
~Michael Singer Untethered Soul