Updated: Aug 6
August 3rd, To Eulogize or Not...
It feels appropriate at this 10 year ‘commemoration’ to write about dad…today was the day we had his funeral mass and burial. This event is one of those you remember some details like yesterday and other memories have been forgotten or are a blur.
For me, what jumps out, is arriving with my family to the parking lot of where our luncheon was to be held, to then get into the limos we had reserved to take us to the church. Given the size of my family 3 boys, 3 girlfriends, granddaughter, and husband – one car was for us alone, nice to be together – until I was told by my sister, “You have to speak, I can’t”. This was and was not that much of a surprise. We, as 5 siblings, had started out trying to write the eulogy together…but the efforts to overcome strong opinions about what was appropriate in the format, or what stories were important to some to share, who should speak (we didn’t all need to) had been going on a couple days and it was determined whoever wanted to speak will and write their own eulogy. In the spirit of trying to be compassionate to how each other was dealing with the death, I had given in to taking a back seat, after going back and forth with starting to prepare to speak and then no, my sister wanted to. It was settled I would stand with my younger brother while my older brother and 2 sisters would deliver their prepared thoughts. I do not recall incorporating any of my thoughts into what was being written. Until that morning – in an instant I had to change to the limo where they were practicing… and write my part, during the 20-minute route.
Of course, talking about dad was easy, if anything it was sifting through all the content that was difficult. And obviously, given the dynamic, there were some thoughts in mind for if I was to speak. Overarching, I didn’t want to be sad. The outpouring from so many had lifted me to a place where I was focused on how special, wonderful - he made such a difference, in so many lives - how could I mourn amongst such a tribute of love. I pulled together what I could. I wasn’t nervous but I have no idea to this day how I sounded or if ‘I did well’. I do know there were things I wish I would have said or done but writing now – am not recalling those either. Surprising, an unwelcome feeling is creepy inside, what foreshadowing existed then to what would occur next.
Dad, may all those you touched, continue to hold on to their favorite memory of you – keeping your spirit alive, always!
Update - I was reminded by my eldest he prepared and delivered a eulogy also - it was so well done - very, very proud of him and that I was able to now recall this memory too.
Hmmm, a man to remember…day 22!
Thank you if you choose to join the journey. Let's hope it is more fun than tears!