Well, I'm a little late for All Souls' Day, but I feel fairly sure they don't mind. They meaning the souls I love who no longer have companion bodies in which to wander about, holding hands, giving hugs, sharing meals, talking, laughing, connecting. The souls whose earthly presence I deeply miss, but whose ethereal presence I believe continues.
Call them what you like － ghosts, angels, spirits. Again, I don't think they care. They no longer sweat the small stuff, even if they were world-class small-stuff-sweat-ers during their lives. I envision them as the ultimate big-picture people now － seeing, knowing, understanding it all at last, they watch, they listen, they support, they soothe, they offer guidance as they can.
My birthmom, Pat, who reminds me to be generous, to love animals, to laugh － and that I'm enough.
My Grandma Nelson, who reminds me to nurture, to converse, to whistle while I work － and that I'm special.
My Mamie, who reminds me to look good in order to feel better, to create for others － and that I can make a difference with even my smallest gestures.
My Pops, who reminds me to take lifelong learning seriously, but not so much myself － and that I'm embraced by love.
My dear friend Martha, who reminds me to be grateful for my family, to be there for my friends － and that I'm brilliant and beautiful, too.
They can't hold my actual hand anymore. But they hold my thoughts, my best self, and a piece of my heart forever.