Vibrations Coaching: rose and iceI had written a completely different piece for you today, and I may share it with you at some later date. But today is different, because today I am celebrating the life of one of the most gentle, humble, wise souls I ever met, in the form of my cousin Steven, whose life was violently and senselessly extinguished, even though his presence was such an important source of hope, fortitude, and energy for positive change in his community.

Yesterday, I thought I would just blacken my social media networks and skip posting this. As you can tell, that idea didn’t last. And it is because I know that Steven would want me to make something rich and sweet of the pain of his loss. He believed in people, in light, in goodness. He lived in integrity with his beliefs and shared his talents, including his radiance, generously.

If he were to speak with me now, I imagine him asking me to make the most of the time that I have. To live each day with the awareness that it has been full, and rich and beautiful. To leave no room for regrets, by which I think he would not mean living carefully, but rather, living fully, correcting my course as I travel, open to the beauty of the people I encounter and reflecting their light back to them. I believe he would tell me to relish every breath and stop to appreciate all the forms of Nature that are present to me in each moment. He would ask me to  listen to my Soul and use fearlessly the gifts I have been given. He would ask me to find something to laugh at.   And I believe he would say this, not because he is no longer here enjoying the physical plane, but because this is how he lived.

Although there is no sense in the gap he leaves, with the promise he held, the many ways he helped others and the environment, I trust, because I must, that his life is a bright torch of inspiration to all that he touched, and that, through us, he is illuminating even more lives.

So today I am writing to beseech you to listen to the beating of your heart and know that it is a privilege to be alive, and to invite you to find one way, today, to celebrate life, yours or someone else’s, one way to leave a mark that you can feel fully aligned with in the world.

Thank you, to those of you who have reached out to express encouragement when I felt I needed it sorely. I am blessed by you, and even this is a gift that comes to me through Steven.

I wish you peace and joy, and a life well lived, moment to moment.


Photo by Colin Brough
Celebrating Life and Death
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19 thoughts on “Celebrating Life and Death

  • March 31, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    Andreita….my heart is broken. Thanks for writing this.


    • April 1, 2015 at 3:43 pm

      Hugs to you, Laura.

  • March 31, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    I celebrate your willingness to share your sorrow, your struggle to find meaning in this tragedy, and the beautiful light of your cousin. I celebrate the thin shafts of light between the clouds today, and know that we all live in that light.

    • April 1, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      Thank you, Debi. I affirm with you that we do all live in that light.

  • March 31, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    I am devastated by such terrible tragedy. Andrea, your message is deep and comforting. Thank you.

    • April 1, 2015 at 3:48 pm

      Ruth, his memory is surely a blessing, may we carry his light in our own lives. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me here.

  • March 31, 2015 at 10:31 pm

    No sabia que Steven era primo tuyo… no wonder you too have such a beautiful soul. Sin duda la perdida es inestimable – – – irreconciliable — acuérdate que a pesar de ello: vive en nosotros como una antorcha que no se apaga, en forma de un inmenso amor sin prejuicios, alma pura y cristalina. Steven nos dejo a todos sin excepción transformados como seres humanos – y aunque nuestra tristeza es abrumadora es igual una bendición. Palabras de consuelo, no las hay, pero solo ese sentimiento implacable de lo que es eterno, y lo que es real. Te envío un gran abrazo y comparto contigo este camino hacia la reconciliación de lo que no podemos cambiar y lo que si podemos hacer, que es caminar en sus pasos con la misma alegría y bondad de su ser. יְהֵא שְׁמֵהּ רַבָּא מְבָרַךְ לְעָלַם וּלְעָלְמֵי עָלְמַיָּא (Yehei shmëh rabba mevarakh lealam ulalmey almaya, “May His great name be blessed for ever, and to all eternity”. Oseh Shalom…

    • April 1, 2015 at 3:52 pm

      Veronica, gracias por tus palabras y por compartir este camino. Oseh Shalom.

  • April 1, 2015 at 12:38 am

    Thank you, primita. This has been such a shock to the system, I am struggling to find hope and meaning in such a tragic loss. Your words help.

    • April 1, 2015 at 3:55 pm

      Perhaps asking to find meaning is too much at this time, Lisa, but I do feel hope. From what I heard, a huge crowd attended his funeral, and I like to think that each of those people, and so many of those of us who were unable to be present are inspired and guided by him and his example and will find ways to extend the reach of his life far beyond what he could have done on his own. I know I am committed to honor his memory in my life and work.

  • April 1, 2015 at 8:57 am

    Andrea, thanks so much for giving me something brave and hopeful to think about in this sad time. Rudy and I are devastated by the senselessness and tragedy of losing such a wonderful human being.

    • April 1, 2015 at 3:56 pm

      I hold you both in love. May Steven’s light continue through us.

  • April 2, 2015 at 1:54 am

    Andrea, tus palabras y las de todos que han respondido me ayudan en estos momentos cuando se nos hace tan difícil entender porque suceden eventos tan dolorosos e injustos en el transcurso de nuestras vidas. No entiendo porque seres humanos pueden ser tan crueles ya que se supone que somos los seres vivientes más desarrollados.
    Lo que debemos , debo hacer es tener una atitud positiva y tratar de mejorar mis contribuciones cada día para aumentar la paz y el entendimiento mutuo.

    • April 3, 2015 at 8:16 pm

      Carlos, reflejo esos sentimientos de confusión. No sé si hay entender posible, pero definitivamente tengo claro que la vida y el ser de Steven son fuente de inspiración y fortaleza para que nosotros encontremos las formas de contribuir. Te mando un abrazo.

    • April 2, 2015 at 3:21 pm

      Thank you, Virginia.

  • April 3, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    Gracias Andrea por siempre encontrar buenas palabras de consuelo. Fue facil y al mismo tiempo muy doloroso despedirse de Steven, desde aqui tan lejos y mandar mucha luz. Un abrazo, Silvia

    • April 3, 2015 at 8:18 pm

      Gracias Silvia, por escribir aquí. La distancia ayuda y dificulta a la vez. Los abrazos físicos ayudan mucho. Te mando uno virtual.

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