Yesterday was hard. Really hard. Quite honestly there is not much about a funeral I like. At all. And I'd like to leave it at that. But even though this blog post is so hard to write, there are words I am aching to get out. I need to remember.
Yesterday we finally said goodbye to my Uncle Denny.
Uncle Denny was a jokester. He always had a joke. Often they weren't very good - but if Denny was there you knew a joke or 10 would be told. No fear of that. Add his brothers into the mix and the jokes could go for hours. And none of them would be all that funny. But we would laugh anyway, cause that is how we did things.
Seems he had the last laugh, even to the very end. His funeral was delayed, because of floods. Twice. How many people can say that?
It gave people reason to crack a tiny smile too you see. Denny's wedding was also surrounded by floods. People laughed a little and reminisced about having to get to the wedding by boat. Or husband and wife taking two separate routes to make sure at least ONE of them got there! You see - I think Denny wanted to make sure we had something to smile about. He wasn't one for sorrow.
But beyond the normal sorrows of a funeral, for me, I found yesterday REALLY hard.
Yesterday we said goodbye to my dad's twin. His "other third" as my sister said (I'll leave you to work out the logistics of that comment - but it makes me smile as I try to figure it out)
This is the brother who didn't even need to finish my dad's sentences. They really did have a link. They could have a conversation with a few random words, and somehow it would all make sense - well, it seemed to anyway.
This is the twin that my Gran didn't even know she was having. I will never forget her telling me about the x-ray (yes - x-ray!) that she had shortly before the twins were born. She said seeing those two little spines was the sweetest thing she had ever seen, and even in her twilight years I know she wished she was able to keep it.
These are the twins who were always up to mischief. Trouble makers I hear. But in a fun way!
These two shared a love of sport. A competitive nature. A love of laughter and their families. And a strong strong love for their mum - my Gran. And yesterday - I watched my dad say goodbye. Yesterday I saw strength and weakness combined in my dad ... and I could do nothing to ease his pain but be by his side
Yesterday also made me ache for my cousins. But despite the obvious pain they were in - they made me so proud my Jason and Jodee.
I cannot imagine burying a parent. God willing it will be a long long way away. We still have a heap of memories to create!
And my cousins are just about my age. I ache for them. But you know what? They did their dad so so well. I am just bursting with pride. They created a beautiful service for their dad. They were gracious hosts and hostesses. They hung in there - even though circumstances and delays would have made things so much harder than usual.
And when Jason farewelled his dad with the eulogy I was almost bursting with pride for the man he has become.
It made me realise that we are all growing up. And has we say goodbye to family and friends in the coming years, it is time for the younger generation to stand up and take the burden from our aunts, uncles and parents. I pray it will be a long time before we need to come together in sorrow again. And in the meantime, I pray I will be up to the task of easing the burden and help carry the load.
Somedays I feel I still have a lot of growing up to do.