As Stacey and I were sitting in a cemetery car park, overlooking the final resting place of what must be, thousands of people that have passed away, Stacey suggests writing a blog post on the subject.
It’s a subject not generally touched upon, especially in the “Dad Blog” niche and to be honest, it wasn’t one I was intending on exploring the slightest myself. However, after reflecting on my other half’s grandmothers passing, the subject doesn’t seem so out of place after all. The deep underlining message is family.
I’ve not been to many funerals, so I wasn’t quite sure on the etiquette when in such an environment. I was startled when I witnessed so many people smiling and laughing in the Chapels waiting area. I assumed this would be a moment in time where everyone would be upset and emotional. The family were emotional, but rather than showing grief and sorrow in this instant, the family were genuinely happy, happy to see one another.
When someone passes away, it’s one of the few times that the majority of a family are together. In this case, it brought brothers together who had not seen each other for a number of years. Exchanging proud stories of their kids and pictures of grandchildren -pride beaming from ear to ear.
It also brought cousins who had not seen each other since they were children in the same room for the first time in a decade. Kids that are now adults with their own families, careers and aspirations. Catching up on life events sadly missed as families grow distant and apart. The hustle and bustle of the modern world, seem to be leaving less and less time for families to connect meaningfully.
As we entered the Chapel, the lighter mood changed to one of a more pensive and dejected feeling. Stacey sits with her dad, holding his hand for comfort. An almost mirror opposite to how Stacey as a child would have needed the hand of her mum or dad for support.
Memories fill the room, as relatives share their precious moments with loved ones. Some opt to share poems, with others sharing stories that turn the tears rolling down faces to pleasing smiles.
After some music and a brief moment of reflective silence, the service was over. Yes, this was a day meant for goodbyes, but also for hellos. Hellos for a family divided by distance & time but united in grief.