April 23, 2007

Rest in Peace Dad......

Not sure how to do this grieving thing.....ironic really.....the topic of grief does come up in my work-life....how simple it seems to advise people that grieving is such an important, integral part of the healing process and yet how many of us actually know how to do it....reminds me of the quote about.....the shoemakers son goes barefoot. Is there a proper way to grieve???

I read this at my father's funeral as a tribute from his 6 children............

Death is nothing at all
I have only slipped away into the next room
I am I and you are you
Whatever we were to each other
That we are still
Call me by my old familiar name
Speak to me in the easy way you always used
Put no difference into your tone
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
Laugh as we always laughed
At the little jokes we always enjoyed together
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was
Let it be spoken without effort
Without the ghost of a shadow in it
Life means all that it ever meant
It is the same as it ever was
There is absolute unbroken continuity
What is death but a negligible accident?
Why should I be out of mind
Because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you for an interval
Somewhere very near
Just around the corner
All is well.
Nothing is past; nothing is lost
One brief moment and all will be as it was before
How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

Canon Henry Scott-Holland, 1847-1918, Canon of St Paul's Cathedral

Not sure how I got through that as we had JUST finished the first hymn "Onward Christian Soldiers" -- probably his favourite -- which seriously started the waterworks and suddenly it was my turn......I think that, after dabbing at my face with a wad of kleenex I just went into auto-pilot mode. The whole event is remembered as somewhat of a surreal blur.
Right after I spoke my oldest nephew read a tribute he had written to Grandpa George on behalf of all the grand-children.....he wrote such a sweet passage.....very touching and captured his memories of his grandpa perfectly!
One of the hardest parts of the whole funeral for me were.....hearing and feeling my younger brother sobbing beside me during the service -- he and Dad shared a very special relationship. My younger brother is younger than all of us by at least a decade -- he was one of those "later in life" babies....the rest of us were 26, 24, 21, 16 (me) and 11 when he was born. My mother thought she was going through "the change of life" and went to the doctor only to be told "Mrs. SoandSo do you know you are 12 weeks pregnant??".
But back to my original train of thought........my Dad started having kids very young at a time when he was barely done being a kid himself. So, after 2 sons then 3 daughters, lots of life experience, age, maturity etc., etc......my younger brother came along when my Dad had the whole father-hood thing pretty much down pat -- with all the trials and tribulations ironed out. As a result I think he was able to be the Dad to my younger brother that he wished he could have been to all of us -- the kind of Dad that comes with age, maturity and experience perhaps.....hard to explain but it was a different relationship. They did all kinds of father-son, really cool, guy bonding sorts of things -- just the two of them -- some of these included baseball spring training in Florida, skiing trips, various sports hall of fame visits and the list goes on and on.
After the funeral some of us went back to my sisters place and enjoyed a wonderful, reminiscent evening together where my younger brother shared alot of his memories of his life with Dad. It was a perfect end to a very sad day.
The very best part of the whole weekend were a couple of things by youngest nephew said while I tucked him in to bed.....one was that he thought that Grandpa George was in a better place nowbecause he would once again be able to do all the things he loved doing so much (my Dad was pretty much incapacitated for the last 2+ years). The other thing my nephew said was that he was glad that grandpa George was in heaven now because he would be able to be with his parents again.........oh my goodness.....out of the mouths of babes????

16 peeps just sayin':

Attila The Mom said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Boo. :-(

Sharon said...

Sorry to hear about your loss.

The passage you read was beautiful. Not sure how you got through it.

I'm not one of the kinds of people who can do things like that during emotional times. I admire you for it. I'm sure it was a comfort to your family.

I hope you feel better soon. Grieving can be a tough process. You just have to roll with it. There's really no right or wrong way, it's different for every one.

The Guy Who Writes This said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Barb. It's nice having you back on the blog. Olease don't stay away for so long.

Hahn at Home said...

Hey B -
So sorry for your loss...I was just thinking about ya' and thought I'd check to see if you were back yet. I don't know how you got through, but having a loving family there to share and remember hopefully provided some comfort.

chapin said...

(((Boo))) I'm sorry to hear about your loss. I'll keep you and the family in my thoughts.

The Mad Hatter said...

Boo hun, Im so so sorry for your loss.

Im sending you lots of hugs and so many kisses darling and you know where I am ok?

roro said...

So sorry to read about your loss. What an amazing and beautiful tribute.

Drew Blackstone said...

Sorry for your loss.

The sweetest relationships make for the hardest farewells.

the only daughter said...

May Peace Be With You and Your Family.

My thoughts are with you all.

Sarah said...

My thoughts are with you at this extremely difficult time. I missed you on here! Glad to see you back.

Grieving. I don't think there is a right or wrong way. I think we do what we can with what we have at the time. Feel your emotions, let them out. Try to do so without judgement. I know it's hard. Trust me, I am speaking from experience.

Sending positive thoughts your way..

Rainwolf said...

Thinking of you.

Attila The Mom said...

Just checking in to see how you're doing...

Bitter Betty said...

Oh my. I'm so, so sorry for your loss.

Val said...

Sorry for your loss. Beautiful passage and kids say the truth and the most logical things, don't they?

Lucy's Mom said...

So sorry to read of your loss. I can so empathize. It's only been a few months since I lost my Dad. I understand how you feel.

After reading through your blog, I begin to wonder if we are twins, separated at birth. We seem so very much much alike, it's amazing. I wrote about the phenomenon in my blog. Check it out if you like.

I'll be back. I've added you to my blogroll. Hope you don't mind.

nina said...

My belated sympathies to you and your family Boo.