Thanks for the great times...

Here I stand on the beautiful, majestic grounds of my Aunt and Uncle’s homestead, nestled beside the Kingston Creek in NB. Growing up, this was a moment I had always dreaded; the moment I’d have to say goodbye. Aunt Mabel died many years ago, but Bob held down the fort until a few months ago, when he moved to a senior’s home with progressive dementia. Although the homestead is still inhabited by family, it’s not the same without them.

As I walk the shoreline, I am overcome with grief by the loss of this anchor in my life. But in the same breath, I am guided by a comforting inner voice, reminding me of yogic wisdom. Ancient yogic texts claim that ‘householders’ (those of us who have families) can practice yoga so long as we live with detachment. Isn’t that our challenge, to love without clinging and let go when it’s time?
I decide to spend my time here honoring this place and the people who brought so much joy to my younger years, instead of wallowing in the sticky, heavy essence of attachment. At the base of the long driveway (which seemed so much longer when I was a kid), I unroll my mat and take my stance. Bowing to the old homestead with hands at my heart, I recite my mantra for this practice “Mabel and Bob, thanks for the really great times.”
I let my head hang loose in Downward Dog and recall the special rides on your big red tracker, with your strong arm wrapped around my little waist. Thanks for the really great times.
I lengthen out in a lunge and giggle at the memory of my first real cup of tea, and the 20 sugar cubes that you gave me behind my parents back. Thanks for the really great times. 
My tender heart opens in cobra, remembering the exciting experience of milking your cows and then drinking their nectar with homemade cookies. Thanks for the really great times.
My hips release open in lotus as I recall the freedom of running wildly around the open fields and rolling down the grassy hills. Thanks for the really great times.
In a relaxing twist, I soften into the memory of you gently guiding my little fingers to pick strawberries and rhubarb, carrots and potatoes for the huge family picnics. Thanks for the really great times.
As the tears stream from my eyes in Savasana (resting pose), I make the quiet commitment to my dear Aunt and Uncle to share these really great times with my children, and their children, so that their legacy will forever be enjoyed.
What about you? Is there an area in your life where you could be approaching loss with an attitude of detachment and gratitude?