She Loved Us & We Loved Her

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Make up, looking in the mirror, is that me?
Children in black clothes, rushing, formal attire
Sad faces, serious faces
Where am I?
This is it, this is really it

Dad’s face, my face
How old are we?
I feel twelve, we look so much older
Many, many people
Friends, Strangers, stories

“To this day when something big happens in my life I wonder if she would be proud of me”
“I’m lucky enough to have been her god daughter”

“We had just met and she threw me a baby shower, at her home”
“She wrote a note to say she would miss him”

Shaking hands, hugging, smilng, crying
Faces that cause crying, words that cause laughter
We aren’t meant to stay here forever
It still hurts

Black dresses, black suits, driving rain
Ushers, ties, jackets
Kneeling down, crying
“I’m so sorry, I’ll see you right away when I go there”

Cars driving, how could this be?
Prayers, words, trembling voices
Loud organ music, suits, hugging, crying
A photo being handed around, brief smiles
A handkerchief, wrinkled and held tightly

“She loved us and we loved her”

People gathered, words, tears, laughs

“A second mother, an honorary grandmother”
A child speaks, then there are chuckles
I do not want to say goodbye to the casket
I touch it as it passes, want to stop it and hold on to it forever
Do not leave, please stay
But now it is carried away

Cold rain, mud and ice, umbrellas
Tightly crumpled handkerchief, like a child’s blankie
A crank lowers, flowers are removed
Staring at the casket, keeping my eyes on it
Maybe it will stay forever if I keep my eyes on it

It is too low to see
Silent Sobs, cries, tears
With God now, safely wrapped, cradled

“May the angels take you to paradise”
“Rest with God, rest in peace”

White table clothes, silver platters
Sliced beef, warm rolls
Framed photos, black and white memories
Wine, cocktail napkins, music

Somewhere over the rainbow 
Slide show flashing, a life of wonderful times
Talks, reconnecting, sharing
How they got the news, how we met
Who traveled from where, when we will see each other next

“Thank you for being who you are, she loved you so much”
“I got all of the updates, she loved those little boys so much”

The sun comes out, the circle of life goes on
“She would have loved this party,
Don’t you think?”

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Death: Part of life but so painful

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“You always think you have more time” I told my mother in law.  “No,” she disagreed “not at our age, people have died much younger.”  So sad and undeniably part of being human.  My brother in law recently went through the pain of losing his younger brother, the hurt from that loss unimaginable.  A long time friend in the community passed away recently and it’s still shocking to think he isn’t here.  Death is such a definitive part of life and yet it’s so difficult to reconcile.  Since our aunt passed away last week we have been walking around numb and dazed.  Monday and all of the responsibilities of life called so here we are, pushing on as everyone says “she would want us to do,” and of course as we must.  My Mom said “she was called back to heaven to do other work there” and I think of her having no idea she was about to leave and wonder how that can be.  It is so heart wrenching that she will not be with us that I don’t even want to think about future family time without her.  I know she would want us to have those times, celebrate life and be happy.  Maybe missing her so much is selfish.  Meanwhile believing in our destiny and putting faith in what God has planned for us is everything, so why then does it hurt so much, why aren’t we programmed to have a resistance to this sadness and heartache.  The human condition, I guess, the lessons and growth and reasons we’re here.  My husband said “it’s all part of the journey” but it didn’t make me feel better either.  During the night when I toss and turn, each time waking up and thinking “it’s true, she is gone” I think of the Mom in town who lost her husband unexpectedly last year or the children who went to school at Sandy Hook in December.  So much pain yet such a real part of this life.  My sister says to focus on the beautiful blessings around us and of course this is true, and I am so grateful, but it doesn’t lessen the pain.  She wasn’t my aunt for my life time and yet an amazing, loving person can touch your heart so deeply.  I’m the first to say “appreciate each day” however, the loss weighs a million pounds and it’s on my shoulders, on my neck muscles, behind my sore eyes.  Thinking of the last phone call, the last email, the last letter, why did that have to be the last one, but of course I know the rational reasons.  “My dear—…We leave on Friday—…I wish all of you were going with us—… Much love.” -smilingbug