We shopped Tuesday but not for pleasure. We had to pick out the dress that my cousin would be buried in. My younger sister and I picked up my aunt and drove her to the mall. I couldn’t believe how strong she was during this difficult time. She told us how she was able to call almost all of Sharon‘s friends. Her son’s tapped into Sharon‘s buddy list and was able to get a lot of contact information through her e-mail files. The names they couldn’t retrieve from the computer they got from her cell phone. “We found everyone but her friend Jenny,” my aunt said. She proceeded to tell us how Jenny was a friend of Sharon’s. They worked together years ago. Jenny was in her late thirties when she had her first child and decided she wanted to be a stay at home mother. She left her job and spent the days enjoying her new daughter. My aunt knew Sharon kept in touch with this Jenny, but for some reason there was no contact information for her anywhere. To make the task even more difficult my aunt did not know her last name. For most of the car ride she talked about how sad it made her that this friend would not hear the news from the family. She didn’t want this girl to have to open up the newspaper and see a picture of Sharon in the obituaries. We racked our brains trying to think of someone else who could have known her last name. When we pulled up to the store our focus changed. All that was on our minds was finding something Sharon would have approved of. My aunt requested we look for something blue in color, nothing frumpy and it had to be age appropriate. After searching four different stores we found something we all agreed Sharon would look good in. The night of the viewing our family all gathered at my aunt’s house for support. I got there later, after most were gone. We sat out on the back porch and talked about all of the small ways Sharon‘s presence was already being felt. Like my sister hearing a song on the radio that reminded her of Sharon. Or Sharon’s nephew waking up in the middle of the night (the night she passed away) and telling his mother that a spider was tickling him. But the one that topped it all was regarding the friend her mother wished she could get in contact with. “Remember the story I told you in the car about Sharon‘s friend?” my aunt asked. “The one you didn’t have a last name or phone number for?” I replied. My arms swelled with Goosebumps even before I heard the answer. And yours will fill with them too after I tell you what happened. For those of you who read my blog- Losing One of Our Own, I explained that my cousin moved back in with her parents when my uncle grew ill. She lived with them but still kept her home a town away. My aunt and her son drove up to the house to gather some pictures and things. On the way out, he grabbed the mail. In the mail was an invitation to a home cooking show from the friend my aunt told us about. And her phone number was across the bottom. This is why I am a firm believer in the theory of everything happens for a reason.  I don’t need scientific studies to show me proof. I don’t need another person’s confirmation on the validity of my belief. All I know is, there was a mother who was mourning for the loss of her daughter but still managed to be concerned for another person’s feeling. Somewhere someone heard her concern and took care of it for her. God knew it was one less thing she would have to worry about. A non believer could debate me all day long about how this proves nothing.  I know what I know. And I hope everyone one day will be lucky enough to see.  I’d rather believe there is something and hope I’m right. Then believe there is nothing and fear I am wrong.

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