I went to a funeral yesterday. I’d only met her twice- briefly- but she is the mom of a work colleague that I very much admire. She was 84-years young, and did have some health issues, but you never want to see someone in your life lose a loved one, or even lose a loved one yourself. This was my third funeral since February. Two for people I didn’t actually know, and one for my father-in-law. The one similarity of all of them is that they were loved greatly by many people.
My father-in-law, JerrellRay passed away on April 28th after a very brief, yet shitty fight with lung cancer. Well, all cancer is shitty, but when it takes you away from your family only 13 days after diagnoses, it’s really, really shitty. He was a smoker. He probably had cancer for awhile. We’re glad that the cancer was not diagnosed any earlier so that the last years of his life were lived exactly as he wanted and not being even more ill from chemo and medications. He was a daily part of MiniLatte’s life and she asks about him often even though she knows Grandpa Jerry is in heaven watching over us. Jerry’s death actually seemed to bring more life to the family- we fostered relationships with his four daughters over the weeks of his memorial and inurnment and mended a relationship that shouldn’t have needed it as well.
This whole thing happened in the middle of my mom’s hospitalization, post-surgery for me and the day before my birthday. I’ll have more birthdays….. the stress hastened my healing and my village has helped in taking care of mom and in turn, me. People that love me, MiniLatte and AntiLatte. I couldn’t have done it without them. That’s one of the reasons why I went to funerals of people that I really didn’t know…. your actions speak so loudly during difficult times and that goes both ways. There were people that I thought would be there for us that weren’t and then those, that anticipated our needs and took care of us.
Funerals also make you appreciate what you have. I came home and hugged my little girl a bit tighter, told my love 143, and gave my mom a kiss and told her that I love her and am so thankful and happy that she is such a fighter. A detour to see my failing 93 year-old grandfather and my wonderful dad made for a long day, but an important part of it nonetheless. I’ve made a promise to myself that I would make sure to tell those that I love exactly that more often. There are many, so it will take awhile, but it will be worth it. I don’t want to have any “I wish I would have told them” anymore…..