Friday, February 27, 2009

Read All the Way to the End Before You Bring Out the Knives Okay?

Oh my, I should go to bed, but I missed you all so much and it's been so long since I posted (what a day or something...?) that I felt all off-kilter and had to read you guys and then add my two cents.

Do I really have anything to say? Hmmmmmm, yes. I may get burned alive for my insensitivity but I gotta be honest with you.

Funerals are weird.

The viewing was last night and it hit me so hard. Why are we standing around someone's dead body, crying over them and then a little while later we're laughing and talking all the while THERE'S A DEAD BODY OVER THERE GUYS!?!?! Hello? Am I the only one that's weirded out by this?!

My poor oldest daughter is going to be traumatized by it too. My father-in-law told her to touch great-grandpa. TOUCH HIM. The kid is SIX, if I'm a little freaked out by dead bodies then how do you think she's going to handle it? Hmmmm?! So she did, and then he told her its okay to cry. So she did. AND BOY DID SHE CRY! I dropped my two youngest off at a friend's and when I got back (within 10 minutes), I see oldest daughter at the casket holding great-grandpa's hand and bawling! Shock of all shocks, I hurried over there and snatched her up and had to calm her down the rest of the night. Why do people feel the need to do that to little kids? Please for the love, let them be little. We have to grow up fast enough, don't force it on them.

The funeral was today, and once again, I thought about the traditions of funerals and how the heck did we decide this was the best way to do things? Now please, please, don't get me wrong; I understand why we do things the way we do, I understand the concept of it all. But to be honest, its such a worldly perception to me. In the sense of, mourning over a body that really isn't that person anymore, crying over that empty shell, being heartbroken over something that isn't *necessarily heartbreaking. Great-grandpa was a month shy of turning 90, he had lived a wonderful, long life. And he was sick, his body was failing. And now its not! Now he's with people he's missed for years and years, he's reunited and he's happy and he's wonderful. I can't be sad over that! I can be sad that we won't see him for awhile; but I find so much joy in the fact that I WILL see him again, that I can't be sad for too long.

And while I understand that this is horribly generalized, that some situations are completely different and that everyone has their own experiences and feelings about death; my own experiences have taught me not to feel hopeless. And for that I'm thankful.

*of course there are situations that are extremely heartbreaking, I understand that. Don't think me completely insensitive, I'm not trying to be. I'm speaking in a "this person has lived a long, happy, fulfilled life and now its time to let them go" kind of situation. Does that make a difference? I hope so. :)

UPDATE: WOAH! I just finished this and posted it, and all of a sudden my daughter sat up and stared at me with these big ghosty eyes, so I said "Hi, you okay?" Nothing. "Hey, are you okay?" NoThInG. "Umm, lay back down." NOTHING. BIG ghosty eyes. STARING at me. I look at her. She stares at me with those BIG GHOSTY EYES. Finally she lays back down. Do you think thats a sign of some sort? Eek!


  1. We had a very small viewing when my grandpa died last month, and I sort of wish we hadn't. He didn't look ANYTHING like the grandpa I remembered. It was very, very odd.

  2. I think I agree with you on alot of that. I don't know if I want people walking by my casket saying "yeah, she sure ain't what she used to be" (tee,hee) Each situation is different for sure, but I don't think you need to "force" kids to touch --or freak them out about it. Keep it simple for them and answer their little questions. That's why I am going to be taxidermied (did you read my post on that?? --yup, that's what I'm gonna do)
    Or I just want to be put in a simple pine box and sent back home to our family burial spot in the farmlands of southern alberta.

  3. yeah I don't want an open casket at my funeral. Mel you've heard it here so you are my witness. I want a closed casket. with just a very nice photo of me in black and white or sepia from my younger years... say 20ish.

    I am really weirded out by the fact that someone will have to do my hair and makeup and I'll be this big lump of dead flesh... ewwww!

  4. I totally agree with you on so much of that. I mean, it is more than okay to mourn the fact that we will miss that person. It is more than okay to be sad that they have left this earth and we will be separated for a while. So why must their body be on display when they are so gone? I don't know. I just don't really get it in general.

  5. Thanks guys for being so understanding, I was really just talking about the whole body part of a funeral, everything else I'm good with. :) Yeah Kristina, our grandpa didn't look so much like himself, and it does feel so very odd. Yes Wendy, read that post; that was like one of the very first posts of yours I read and I was hooked! hahaha Okay Shell, no open casket. Check. Does that mean I'll be at your funeral? hmmmmmm, I'm good with that if it means we'll be best friends forever! ;) Thanks Rachel, I'm so glad you guys got what I was saying and I didn't offend anyone! :)

  6. For the record, closed casket at my funeral (I like the picture idea!) and dancing after. I want a party, no sad eulogy or any of that...there needs to be dancing!! Seriously. I said that to Gramma R. once and she said, "me too!"


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