Friday, 9 January 2015

a funeral

I took Digger to a family funeral yesterday. I'd asked a number of people what they thought about bringing him. Most people thought it would be a good thing. So I decided I would take him, my tender, sunny ,energetic 3yo. And it all turned out very well. Digger as amazingly well behaved. We sat at the back ready to make a quick get away. But there was no need. We sang, stood up, sat down, stood up again and so. Digger followed it all. 

I think he responded the somber atmosphere in the church as he stayed quiet. Perfect reading of how to behave. 
He was even ok-ish about my tears. Kissed me, and hung on close. 

The coffin was carried out past us. Outside it was lowered into the grave. The family said their goodbyes and threw in momentos. The rest of us followed, throwing in roses that landed on the coffin - as a last farewell. Digger threw in a single white rose, breaking the silence with 'It fall down deep. It fall down.' 

He was confused though about seeing so many people he knew = party time, but everyone seemed sad and many people cried = not party as he knew it. 

However well he had taken it, he was exhausted afterwards. I was too. We all were. Only natural. He clearly sense the intensity of occasion. So after registering him as heading for overtired, I strapped him in the buggy. A walk around the block was all that was needed. It's been a while since I had to force a nap like that. 

Was I glad I had taken Digger? Yes. Would I do it again? Yes. 
Would I recommend people doing it. In principle yes, but obviously it all depends on the context. 

Death is all around. We are all headed that way. Saying goodbye is everywhere. Loss in a major issue in our children's lives. Not exposing ourselves and our children to it is not an option. In term of a funeral, it's a matter of when. Not whether Or not. And that was yesterday for us. 

I wish we could talk a lot more about death and loss on our society. Not in a doom and gloom way, but as a part of life. There seems to be so much angst about it. Everywhere. 

I have a friend who's father lay on display for a week in the family home after he died. That is the way that village did it. Giving everyone a chance by to pay their respect and to give their sincere condolences to the family. And have another biscuit and a cup of coffee. My friend and his family said goodbye to their loved one over the course of that week. They sat in silence, on their own (my friend crept down in the night to be alone), or singing and chatting with friends and family. And after one week he really had to go. He was beginning to smell. But that is the best farewell I know. It still seems right and natural to me.  

I didn't see my uncle dead. And that may have been a step too far for Digger - or would it? His death is still a bit abstract for me. The family situation in the run up and after his death is complicated and sad. It bring out the best in some and the worst in others. So there is still a lot of unresolved feelings slushing around in me. 

Death is so darn irrevocable. And sometimes is pisses me off. Frustrates and confuses me. And just makes me sad. It takes time. And those are all obvious natural feeling that need to run their course. Within treason ofcourse when looking after Digger. 

I read a beautiful blog about an adopters loss of her father and how it brought her closer to her adopted daughter []. Like peeling an onion I understand this blog a little more now. I sense there is a long way to go in understanding my sons's loss. And that it is different to what I know as loss. 

No comments:

Post a Comment