Thursday, July 9, 2009

FUNERALS

Andy Warhol
Sad,sad news. A friend of my 15 year old daughter lost her father to cancer last week. About three days later, her brother tragically committed suicide. What a sad situation and I wish I knew how to help them.

One of the lessons I have learned in my life is...I always try to go to funerals and if I cannot make the funeral, I really try to go to the visitation. It is never fun, but I always try to go. I usually send flowers and try to send over food to the home too.

My grandfather's funeral had about 200 people and my grandmother's funeral had about 80 people. I know she was actually loved by many, but she survived them all. It was so important to my family and me to know that others valued her life too. This is why I go to funerals.

My rules are simple:

If you are a friend and have lost someone close, I am there. Even if you are not a close friend but are involved in my life or my child's life, I am there...period. It means so much to your friends and family that you were there supporting them.

What are your thoughts on attending funerals?

14 comments:

Canadian Preppy said...

I could not agree more. My mother has attended several funerals for the parents of her friends. Even if you do not know the person well, it is important to support your friends & family.

Pink Martini said...

I once thought they were for close friends and family of those who had passed to attend and I even told my best friends not to attend my mother's funeral that took place a good hour and a half away when our kids were small but I have come to think differently as a show of support as you do. We are there for those remaining and I always hear from those grieving that 'it was nice so and so came.' The effort that we make to take time out of our day to be with them in their pain seems to be very much appreciated. My heart breaks for the mother for losing a husband and son. So very, very sad.

Jennifer said...

I agree completely. I will be keeping that family in my prayers.

Pink in a sea of blue said...

I always try to go, too. And it was my great group of friends in the neighborhood that got me through my mother-in-law's death and treatment when she lived with us for a while. Meals, wine (when they thought I needed it), cards, a huge gift basket after she passed. It was all so comforting. I feel so deeply for that family you know. How terribly sad...

GrannySmithGreen said...

What a tragic story. I am so very sorry.

You know, funerals are important for the survivors. They are the one's in need at that time.

What I really think is important is to be there for someone BEFORE and AFTER the actual death. Think of the stress a caregiver must experience taking care of someone with a terminal illness.

The suicide, oh gracious, that is SO unfortunate! That poor family. They really have been put through it all.

The bottom line: we really must all love one another. Really, life's too short for grudges, and awkward feelings. Tell those you love that you LOVE THEM--NOW!

Well, you asked about funerals and I jumped off the deep end. I hope you have a wonderful weekend and it's full of LOVE!

Steph said...

I don't do funerals, unless you are close family or very, very close friend. I can't personally do it. And after talking to my secretary, years ago, whose husband died and she told me she couldn't even remember who came to the funeral home or the funeral, I don't feel so bad,
Now, I WILL be there before and after to do anything I can.

Gwen said...

I'm thankful for people like you. When my mother passed away I had friends show up that I never expected. My husbands friends came, old coworkers, a friend that had just had a baby two weeks earlier. It was such a blessing to be surrounded by everyone's love.

I also remember being a child (8th grade age) and driving in the family car to the cemetary my grandpa would be buried at. On the way there a little old man took off his hat, placed it over his heart and stood on the side of the road completely still while we all passed by. I'll never forget that.

So...I also try to make it to every funeral and I always pull over for a funeral procession to show my respect. I'm praying for your daughter's friend and her family.

XOXO

Headbands and Hand Bags said...

That is so neat that you are so supportive! I am sure it means so much to people!

Gracie Beth said...

All I can remember from my junior year of HS is attending funerals because 2 of my friends passed away both at age 17. I recognize that is someone I know passes away or someone that I know loses someone close then it is important to go to show support regardless of how unpleasant or hard it might be to go. Unfortunately also my junior year my uncle's wife's sister passed away and I started to bawl in the middle of a funeral for someone I had never met because she passed away 2 weeks after my friend and I was having some serious flashbacks to his funeral. I was so totally mortified but my family understood what was going on, that is the only situation where I wished that I had not attended a funeral.

Struggler said...

How sad for this family.
I do think it's good to go the funeral if you can, but I agree with the comment above that the family may be in such shock they don't really know who was there.

So, I make sure to send a little note, since it seems people tend to hang onto these, and can look through when they're feeling more able to deal with it all, and get the support at that time.

Torch Lake Prep said...

I agree completely. Seeing a familiar face provides such comfort and it really helps to know how much your loved one means. I also send a note to the home with a reminder of something funny/interesting or memorable about that person. If I don't have a personal story I will quote Mitch Albom, "Death ends a life, not a relationship." What a good egg you are PPPG.

Princess Freckles said...

i always try to go too. I just think that I would appreciate it if/when I'm in their position. When my fiance's grandfather died this past winter some unexpected people came and it meant so much to his family.

I'm so sorry about you daughter's friend. I will say a few prayers for them.

LPC said...

And if you can't go, send a note. The best notes say at least, "I'm sorry for your loss." Anything extra depends on the person and your relationship.

Tickled Pink And Green said...

Since my father died, I realize now how much it means to the family to have people show up. To have a small showing would have made me feel so much sadder. It was great seeing the large crowd who took the time to show up for us. It meant everything.