01 September 2007

My father died last night...

while we were driving the long road to get to him. We were four hours away when he slipped away. Everyone says it was a very peaceful passing. The mortuary picked up the body before we got there. The hospice people picked up the bed and other equipment before we got there. When we walked in it was like it never happened.

There are several things I will wish forever - that we had started early in the morning, that we had come down the day before, that I had called him as much - or more - than I called my mother these last few weeks.

They told him I was coming. They said he tried really hard to wait for me. I never knew until today how much I really really love him. Right now I have this terribly hard knot in my chest that I cannot ever imagine going away.

He wants to be cremated. They call the ashes cremains - I never heard that word before today. The funeral home director was incredibly good. I thought it would be awful there. It was not.

I did get to see him. He is not being viewed, he does not want a traditional funeral where the body is displayed. He wants just a memorial service.

His body is not going to be embalmed - no make-up, no hairstyling. He looked very good today. None of that artificial look that usually disturb us so much at funerals. I am very glad to have gotten to see him. He truly looked like he was just resting - except for the fact that he was so very still and quiet. He never was a quiet sleeper, always catnapping, moving slightly, sleeping lightly.

I touched his hands, stroked them and curled my fingers inside his. I put my forehead against his and whispered to him, telling him how sorry I was that I could not be with him more these last few weeks, and that I loved him. I had to touch his arms, his face, his chest and legs and feet. I think it made the other people in the room uncomfortable.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I will not pretend to know what you are feeling but only wish for you to remember that I am here, at any time and my heart is going out to you. If I were closer I would walk with you, cry with you, and bear as much of your suffering as you need me to. As it stands I will, but from a distance. Is there something I can do?