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BrightEyes: A Tribute To Edna Fritz

“The eyes are the windows to your soul.”

- William Shakespeare

Many creators, prophets and lovers of life have spoken about the power contained within the human Eye. How this is a reflection of something much more, a window, a portal into the soul itself. Within this sense in the human body lives an entire world that can lead us into the miraculous, the limitless, the depths of the unknown.

In 2008 I had the privilege of meeting the woman who was soon to be my mother in law, Edna Fritz. Of all her many wonderful qualities her blue bright eyes stood out the most. Now sitting here attempting to put the memories and the feelings inside of the memories into words, I would say that her eyes always reflected the beauty and kindness of her heart and the love and patience that existed within it. This light in her eyes has been confirmed through hearing many stories of the consistent selfless love she provided for her family including her beloved Bill, her children, grandchildren and so many more. This loving steady presence spanned over many eras, though out the years weather they be filled with challenges and loss, or joy and success. Edie became an anchor, a safe harbor for anyone who was troubled or sick and a beacon of celebration when times were good.

She could light up a room with a flicker of her eye, console a broken heart with her presence or pass down her ancestry through and Irish gig or the perfect homemade chocolate chip cookie. Each of these were gifts she gave, her lightness of spirit that was expressed through the experience of family life.

In August of 2020 Chandler supported moving his parents from being quarantined in a dark, small room for months to this beautiful peaceful serene ranch that we gather at today. While it was no small feat to get them here, and no small undertaking to care for Edie during her last year of life the healing this space and time provided was what our beloved Edie needed and deserved. To be surrounded by nature, the mountains, trees and fresh air and family was so important to her.

Some of the challenge she faced with her decline was to forget and at times go into the dark. However being in the comfort of this “home”, surrounded with the love and care that was given to her was part of the reciprocal nature of love. We often hear sayings of how what you put out into the world returns to you, and with this when it was her turn to receive she was nourished by this love and care.

Over those 11 months I witnessed more selfless love returning to her and the beautifully painful process of witnessing her let go of life. Her dedication to the embodiment of love within this life was now coupled to her longing toward the afterlife, the space where her spirit is allowed to return home.

In those last weeks and days, as her sweet soul moved closer and closer to God, she embodied the most radiant, soft yet utterly courageous women I could imagine. Her expressions became pure. The simple moments of being, the soft presence of a smile, the twinkle of an eye. In those moments she not only was a wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and friend, but also began returning to the beautiful innocence of a child, like a daughter returning to God. I know each of us in our own way feel blessed to have had the bright eyes of Edie Fritz shower our lives. Being the receiver of her love has taught me that unconditional, pure love is possible even through times of struggle, as well as times of ease.

I witnessed great amounts of courage, tenderness, strength and grief within the walls of this sweet home. Love was the underlying structure of everything. Once she felt she had the permission to let go into God, she moved closer and closer to the light. As her body slowly transitioned, any confusion and darkness in her eyes cleared. It’s as if the veils of her forgetfulness were being lifted, one by one, revealing a quality of illuminative light not only within her eyes but within her very soul itself.

The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.”

- Audrey Hepburn.

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