“The Inuit inukshuk has evolved into more than just stone markers. It has become a symbol of leadership, cooperation and the human spirit. Each stone of an inukshuk is a separate entity but was chosen for how well it fits together with other stones. The stones are secured through balance. Each one supports the one above it and is supported by the one below it. Together, the stones achieve strength through unity. This effect is applied to a philosophy for people where a group can achieve greater success with cooperation and team effort rather than individually. The inukshuk stands for the importance of friendship and reminds us of our dependence on one another.” – Free Spirit Gallery
I love my Inukshuk. It was a present from my mother-in-law, Kevin’s mom, and I wear it most often out of all my other jewelry. I was and am blessed to have a continued relationship with my in laws. I know this is not the case for many widows. I have heard horror stories about widows whose in laws threatened to take their children, who have gone to court for grandparent rights and create rifts that no widow(er) should have to endure on top of their grief.
I am blessed. My in laws are pretty rockin’. They’re thousands of miles away which makes it difficult to stay “close”, but we talk usually bi-weekly, and I enjoy visiting them in Canada. I lean on them for support. They knew Kevin best, and keeping that connection with them is very important to me.
When I wear my Inukshuk, I think about them, and the bond that we now have. Granted, there were difficult times when Kevin was sick where we didn’t always agree. There were times when we became frustrated with one another, where tensions were thick, and emotions were high. It was not easy, but now, it’s just us, so we bond together.
It’s important to me to maintain those relationships. I didn’t want to lose relationships with Kevin’s friends either. Some have been maintained, some barely exist. It’s the nature of death, as I found with my own friends. But for those who stood by me, who have been here to walk this difficult journey with me, they are the stones that have supported me. They have become my Inukshuk bond.
As my parents and I drove across the trans-Canada highway from Sioux Sainte Marie to Winnipeg, there were tons of Inukshuks piled along the rocks that bordered the highway. It was a constant reminder of how we all are united in some way. I wish everyone could see that today.