Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Things More Important Than Politics

It would have been easy for us today to write about the tax cut and unemployment insurance deal. Lord knows, a million other publications online and offline will still be talking about that subject today and probably through the end of this week. We even had planned to write one more commentary on it ourselves for this edition.

Sometimes, however, there are things more important than politics.
So today, we just want take a moment and acknowledge the holidays - and death.

For some of the readers of this publication, the death of Elizabeth Edwards on Tuesday from metastasized breast cancer, came as somewhat of a shock. It wasn't as though the world hadn't known she had a terminal prognosis. She announced that she had cancer the day after the 2004 Elections, and dealt with its effects for much of the next six years.

What stuck with us today, and changed the tenor of our words to you, is that the family of Elizabeth Edwards are not the only people who are having a difficult time dealing the loss of a loved one this holiday.

The passing of grandparents and spouses, children and friends... from age, from disease, from accidents - and from war, continues to affect us. We've discovered that more than a few of the people we care about in our personal and professional circles seem to be having a tough time handling the death of a loved one at this time of year.

Dealing with the death of people we care about isn't ever an easy thing - especially during the holidays, when everyone is trying to be happy and peaceful. "Merry Christmas," or "Happy Hanukkah," we shout to one another, even if we don't feel much of the spirit in us, as if faking it will somehow spark us to believe again.

The magical trick is, that if we let it, that positivity, that hope that we feign for others, really can help us deal with our losses. Whether we celebrate Christmas or Hanukkah, Eid or Solstice, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, or any other holiday, now more than ever we need to remember each other, and what this season is really about. It is a season of hope - something we think so many of those gone from us would tell us to focus upon, if they could.

Our hearts go out to the Edwards family, as they do to all of our readers who are dealing with the loss of of a friend or family member during this season. We think Ms. Edward's final message to the world is one well worth reading - and remembering - for all of us:
"You all know that I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces -- my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope. These graces have carried me through difficult times and they have brought more joy to the good times than I ever could have imagined. The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that. And, yes, there are certainly times when we aren't able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It's called being human. But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful. It isn't possible to put into words the love and gratitude I feel to everyone who has and continues to support and inspire me every day. To you I simply say: you know."
Please join us in a heartfelt farewell and blessing to a truly great lady.

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