February 28th, 2011


Weekend roundup, Fri-Sun

Long is probably the best way to describe. How three days managed to stretch into what in retrospect feels like six is the nature of living in the moment. Friday was difficult of course with my F-I-L's funeral. We arrived an hour ahead as requested and that hour stretched for two (it seemed) as we waited to begin. The service was led by the aunt of one my S-I-L's children. (Yeah, I know. Aunt via marriage.) I was asked to write something for it and one of my S-I-L wrote also. I'll drop what I wrote at the end because I think it describes well the man my F-I-L was and how he will be remembered.

I managed to hold the tears to the rims of my eyes until my youngest lost it and started sobbing. That was it. I can hold my pain for periods of time, but I cannot stop the pain when another is hurting. My tears streamed endlessly after he started and my future D-I-L had the same happen to her. Not that tears at a funeral are bad, or unseemly, but .... tiring on top of exhaustion.

Saturday was a day of exhaustion, lucid dreaming, shopping and cleaning. It stretched itself out to accommodate all of that. Sunday brought a reading at a UU service, more cleaning, cooking, and company for middleboy's belated birthday celebration. No-one mentioned to empty seat that F-I-L would have been in. There was laughter and spirits and good food. We turned our focus to my sister's spring wedding in Chicago and began making reservations for the motel and figuring out logistics for traveling - air? car? More laughter and some poking at the single couples and room distribution.

The body --- it has turned on me in ways not seen in a long time. Not detailing it because it pisses me off - ha! It will indeed settle back out I expect as life resets itself to some sort of new normal. I shall be patient and allow this to occur. All will be well.

What I wrote for Papa Jones' service:

Words cannot express the depth of love we feel for this man - father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, cousin and friend. Our love is equaled by our loss at this time, but he loved all of us back so completely that our memories will always be tipped to the side of love instead of sorrow. Family was the most important thing to him. He verbalized this frequently to his family, his friends, to any who would listen and he showed it through his actions throughout his life.

From his dedication to work with the railroad so he could provide well for his wife and children, to his complete enjoyment of his retirement so he could spend time with his family - he loved and loved well. The grandchildren and great-children always brought twinkling eyes and warm laughter from him as he marveled at how lucky he was to have lived long enough to be blessed by their presence.

His face lit when he spoke of his wife, wisps of tenderness and devotion wrapping the edges of his words as sadness settled at the corners of his eyes at losing her over 30 years ago. Abundant love was in him, unafraid to show it and voice it, setting an example of openness for all of us. Dad, Grandpap, Bud - you were thoroughly loved and shall be dearly missed. We hold your memory deeply in our hearts, forever grateful to have known you, loved you, and be loved by you. Blessings.

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