For the background on why I start out like I do, read down (up?) a couple of entries.
Death. The greatest adventure, some would say. Maybe for the person whose died, it is. For the rest of us, it can show us how transient our existences are. It doesn't have to be so, shall we say philosophical, either. It can also show us how much a person means to us, show us what we're capable of feeling, giving, and understanding...it can show many things to those of us still alive to witness the loss. I was alternatively awed and horrified watching her family deal with things.
Oh, a disclaimer. To those that had to deal with my weird 'funerals are hard' and 'interments are worse', well. I meant viewing rather than funeral. I got a bit confused and was in a hurry.
First: Bill. That's the name of the man who died. My largest regret is that I will never know him. Also is that I call him Bill now. I wouldn't have ever dared while he was alive. We weren't friends, or anything. I didn't know him. He was just the neat father. Sometimes he was a bit annoying, but much less so than the mother...He was the source of strength, even in his troubled times. I can understand that, and respect it for how hard it is to do. He always had my respect, regardless. He dealt with things that I would not deal with half as well with ease and grace externally. I have no doubt that internally it was another story, but I was an outsider looking in. I saw how and what he tried to do. And now he's gone. I hope that his memory is honored by attempting to do what he wanted. Even if they don't realize it. These things have a way of working out....or failing miserably. But I have hope.
The viewing was for me, the hardest. Probably everyone else too. I say often I'm an empath, and I don't mean that in the X-men sort of way, but that I'm very sensitive to the moods of others and tend to vibrate like a harp string to them. It makes being myself very hard. And headaches suck. And I had a huge one. We got there early of course...It was just me, her, her sister, and her mother. I let them be by themselves for a while. I may be close to one of the parties involved, but I am not family and there are things in which the full grief can only be felt by those who are. It has nothing to do, I've determined, with amounts of love. Integration to ones life, perhaps? And family, to family, is inseparable. The loss of guiding forces, even if you don't want them there, or need them...is a loss of great magnitude. It forces you to rethink your actions, your beliefs. You don' t have that safety net.
After things were setup, and they could bear to look at him, people started to trickle in. I was mostly the 'friend', and few people tried to make direct conversation with me, preferring to use me as a 'knower of where people were.' It left me alone to my introspection and my occasional duty as comforter. I was remembering the first funeral I went to, the only one that sticks out in my mind. (the death of Ian, a senseless death in a senseless world of accidents to those who don't deserve them) In fact, I realize that somewhere I -still- harbor some resentment about Ian's death. And he was only a boy I knew for two years in grade school. This loss will never go away, and I knew that, but dealing with it...coping. Mmmph. A lifetime. The things you'll realize you've lost. You won't be able to tell your children how 'Grandpa' is and have them commiserate. He'll just be a source of stories to them. It makes a good excuse to have children in a reasonable time frame....:) Walking down the isle..whose going to do that for her! And all the other little things...
I said in my earlier post that I was some inhuman pillar of strength, but as I said my own silent good-byes, I cried. Not with tears...not many, anyways. But internally.
An observed interest (or, my mind never shuts down): friends and distant relatives feel odd touching the dead....while the close family touches gently, kisses even more so, and leaves little gifts to be buried for all time. Why shouldn't everyone involved...
The interment. It was also early, in fact, earlier than the viewing was, the next day. I had woken up and thought it was going to be a dreary day, but as I stood at the cemetery, I realized it wasn't dreary, it was poetic. The gray skies, the gentle wind, the occasional raindrop...backdropped by the gentle hum of conversation and tears. Again, good-byes, but this time the good-byes were more for the people still living than the dead. Or at least, that's how the minister made it. I didn't like him much, to be honest. But he apparently brought comfort to the family, and that is indeed the point, no? People insisting that if you ever need -anything-...
After it was over, I wanted to walk through the cemetery, but there was apparently a church dinner to be had, and prepared for. So they went off to do that, and I went home... A very sober drive for all my thoughts of what is death to me.
And finally, the party. It went in stages, interestingly. First the family, and two friends (me, and Jake). Then the sisters friends started to trickle in (and at the height, they outnumbered everyone else! For someone who says she has no life, she's a large support group.) And as they did that, the family trickled out. Then as the 'hotties' (*grumbles* Some people at this party annoyed me. The person who coined this phrase, was one of them.) left, the mothers friends came in to finish out the evening. Very little in 'remembrance' occurred, at the party, much to my thoughts of bad taste. About it was the prayer that apparently was coined by Bill for food. 'Grace. Let's eat.'
Most of the remberance that I saw occur happened when I, not being the social person I am, went out and sat by the lake and watched a few falling stars in silence and memory and talking of what she wanted from life, and why she couldn't be in the house with all the irreverent people. We were joined by others, some her friends at some points, and I think that was more a good party than anything else. When we finally came back, the man who grinned at me lewdly and said, 'Was she good?' almost got cold-cocked. As it is, I told him, politely, to fuck off. I reminded him that some people lost a =father= and that they weren't in the mood to party -all- the time and that they had things to talk about. Gah. Don't get me started on him. Idiots exist everywhere. Unfortunately, most of the mothers friends were idiots. I think it's a birds of a feather thing...
It was odd, I was trying to be as sociable as I could be in a group where I exist on the peripheral, and helpful...and was told thusly by said mother. But later learned the mother thought I was rude and antisocial. I know she's grieving, but there's no point in lying to me to my face.
Through all of this, she said (not the mother) that just being there was enough for her. And I hope it was, because she seemed to garner strength. The difference between what one knows is possible, and what one wants to do...Is huge. She'll be a while in recovering, but I think she may do it better than her sister, or her mother. Who knows, only time will tell.
Time, the greatest enemy of us all.
Irreverent points I wanted to mention: One of the sister's friends that came to the viewing was dressed..intrestingly...but normally for the party. Interesting: she was hot, normal, she was not. Have I become so shallow as to judge people I don't know by mere appearances?
Laura, at the interment...was dressed beautiful. I love that skirt on her.
I was the tallest person for -most- of the proceedings. The few who were taller where married into the family, and weren't there as much as I was. I didn't realize everyone was so short, but fairly universally short (i.e. same height) across the bloodline. It was weird.
I feel so much older than many people who are older than me.
And with that, I think the death part of this is done with. I've other things to mention that occurred (like my fender bender) but those can be in other entries.
I was going to end this in some...tangible manner, but alas, I've nothing to end with other than this: I hope I learned from this, and I hope those afflicted more directly by this than me, they will remember Bill with a smile. He would have wanted it that way.