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This last week the blog world lost a good friend.
She was beautiful and kind and even though I never met her
they say she was someone who you would want to spend a long time with sharing and praying
and just enjoying each others company.
She had a rare disease that kept her in her apartment for the last three years of her life.
The way she saw people or stayed in contact with them was through her computer. 
They say she always thought of others and reached out to them
even when her own difficult journey continued to be a burden for her health.
When I heard about her she reminded me of a friend of mine
who I had in high school and throughout our early married years.
Her name was Claudia.
She was a kind sweet spirit and always thought of others before herself.
She had cystic fibrosis a horrible lung disease that did eventually take her life.
Claudia loved people.
When I would call her the conversation left her and moved to how I was doing before I even realized what was going on.
She loved deeply and knew the illness she suffered from was serious.
She was beautiful and radiated the love of God and his faithfulness in everything she did.
When she passed away I was given a Bible with her picture inside
it is something I will always treasure.
When we lose someone
we think of them in a new and different way.
We remember conversations.
We remember moments shared.
We remember what they looked like and how much we cared about them.
But I often wonder
does it also make us think of what others would say about us
should it be our time to leave?
Would would they be able to share about us?
What would our epitaph say or describe?
Epitaph means: a commemorative inscription on a tomb
or mortuary monument about the person buried at the site.
A brief poem or other writing in praise of a deceased person.
I often have told my husband if I leave before he does I want my stone to say:
“I told you I was sick.”
But really a stone does not represent me or who I was as a person.
It would be nicer to have a small maple tree planted.
Where one could observe the changing of seasons as the leaf colors reflect the passing of time.

Our lives do have seasons.
We have good ones and some that are not so good.
Colors are vibrant when we are younger and then as we age and enter into the autumn season of our lives the colors deepen and grow darker as we reflect the beauty of growing old. 
When it is my time to leave my hope is to leave such a ‘meaningful’ reflection that others will say,
“She loved the Lord and she cared for others too.”
When the end is near I pray our lives will have meaning and purpose
so that others will know
who we were and who we loved
when it is our time to say our final goodbye.