Wednesday, January 2, 2008

So we were trying to avoid...

The viewing. Neither I nor the dh are into open casket funerals. We figured the 3 hour service last night would be the viewing but no. We went this morning for the services and there it was, the open casket with the veiled body of our friend's daughter. Oh the look of horror on the dh's face. I thought he was going to get up and run out of the church. Mind you this is also one of those services that has 'Jesus' as every 3rd word and is based a lot on faith. The dh is not so good with that stuff so it was a less than great experience for him. Of course it was also a funeral so I'm sure he's had much better mornings. Anyway, it was rough but only because up there was a family that we know and think very highly of mourning the loss of their 19yr old dd. At some point they had a video of here when she was probably 9 years old and singing a chirstian song. A very cute video to be sure but as a parent I don't know if I could have handled that in the same situation. Irma (the mom) stood up and put her arms in the air towards the front of the church and Ruben put his arms around his wife. I'm sure the only reason they have held together this well so far is because they have 2 other children they must survive for. Becca was there at her sister's coffin greeting every one that came up. She would fuss over some arrangement of Bethany's clothes at some points and I can only imagine how difficult a process this was for her. Her parents were falling apart (of course!) and she has her own pain she's going through. These girls were only a year apart in age, they grew up practically like twins.
There were a lot of classmates that got up and spoke about Bethany, she was well loved and had the same beautiful smile that her mother does that warms an entire room. She was as well known for it as her mother to be sure.
We missed the burial, it was 1pm by the time it was over at the church and I had PT at 2 plus we couldn't leave my kid at Oksana's house forever, Dahlia had strep throat and had taken all the kids to the doctors with her to get diagnosed. We have such great friends.
The dh and I briefly discussed how these things make us feel so much more grateful for all the little things we have. The ability to kiss our little girl goodnight and tell her we love her. Stuff we take for granted every single day. We shouldn't, these are all gifts that can be taken away in the blink of an eye. My friend/co-worker Mike put together the funeral services for Ruben. He called me a few nights ago to say hi because it occurred to him (and me too, trust me) that he could have just as easily been making all of these arrangements for me. For all intents and purposes I should not have lived through that lovely aneurisym. Mike did a lot for Ruben's family, he stepped up to the plate when no one else did (or could). He had never met Ruben's family before but that made no difference in his desire to help. Just like the hubby, when he got the call he was ready to hop on a plane up to Amarillo and do whatever needed to be done to help them out. Tragedies do bring out either the best or the worst in people. This experience has been a learning one for many people.

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