I had a lovely Easter.
I rolled out of bed at 6:20 to make it to Sunrise Service. (Easter simply calls for Sunrise service for me, despite my lack of enthusiasm for mornings.) Alex goes with me many years, but I didn't wake him this year since we had such a late night Saturday. So, it's 7:00, 45 degrees and damp, and I'm sitting alone at Easter service. I recently switched churches (haven't even decided if this is a permanent or temporary switch), so I don't know anyone and I've only ever spoken to one of the handful of people who turned out so early. I'm feeling very cold, a little lonely and not very Easter-ly. And then I look up and see a hawk soaring above us and lighting on the Church roof, facing the service. And me. All of a sudden I remembered the hawk when Grandpa died. For weeks after he died, we saw a hawk all over the county. And when we went out on the river to spread his ashes, a hawk followed us the entire time. We associated that hawk with Grandpa, and we said he was watching over us through the hawk. I haven't thought of that in years and had stopped associating hawks with Grandpa. But, when I saw that hawk at Easter service, I suddenly remembered. And I felt better. I felt like I had family with me. It was a lovely, if very cold, service.
When I got home, after a nap, I told Alex about it. A few hours later we went to Aunt Kathy's for the family dinner. Everyone was there, relaxed and happy. We had a great visit. My cousin's family is relocating to Texas in two weeks, so it was particularly nice to have a long visit with them. Several of us sat out back, by the lake and the fire, visiting. And Alex turns to me and says "Look, there's a hawk." Sure enough, a hawk was soaring over head and then lit in a tree by the lake, looking towards us. I couldn't help but think Grandpa was watching over us, pleased to see the family together and happy.
It was a good day.
Happy Easter, Grandpa. I love you, too.