Monday, August 11, 2014

I've come to a conclusion.

And, indeed I have.

Yesterday I wrote about the address books I've had over my lifetime, and how now quite of few of the entries in my current one contain gigantic black X's, because several of members of my family, and quite a few friends have gone to that place where mail in not delivered.

And this got me to thinking about all those funerals, memorial and grave-side services I've attended over the years.  I didn't like attending any of them, but wanting to be 'political correct' and certainly did not want to hurt the surviving family's feelings, I always went.

So, after yesterday, I figured it was time to confess.  Around the time I turned 75 I made up my mind I was no longer going to attend these occasions...none...I'm done. I've come to the conclusion, these events are not to honor the dead, but for the living...Oh, sure, the dead might be looking down and seeing the gathering...but just might be heading off to play golf on the best country club course they've ever seen.

And all those flowers and house plants,  Please, and again...LISTEN UP FAMILY...IF YOU CAN'T SEND ME BOUQUETS AND LOVELY POTTED PLANTS NOW...DON'T BOTHER AFTER I'M LONG GONE.  I won't be able to smell them, care for them, or even give a dang for that matter.

Then there are all those casseroles...each with a label on the lid stating:  "Please return empty casserole container to..........................." (Supply name on dotted line.). Who really feels like eating after losing a loved one.  I didn't...for months.  There was so much to take care of.

Anyway, this blog is to let everybody know I'm done attending funerals, memorial and grave-side events. And, I'm really sorry if this hurts your feelings.  This has nothing to do with my loving you, or the fact you will be terribly missed.  I'm simply going to handle my grieving on my own terms, to heck with political correctness.

Therefore, when I finally bite the bullet, cash in my chips, travel to the golden gate. I really don't want mourning, or any kind of service.  Actually, my husband had the right idea, and not one single soul had one bad thing to say about his plan.  His will simply stated he wanted his plans carried out as quickly as possible, absolutely no service of any kind (shuddering to think what would happen to me if I did) I did exactly what I was told.  First his body went to OHSU (Oregon Health and Science University) where he and I had donated our bodies decades ago.  Then, while all the family was still in town we threw a party in his honor and talked about his live, his failing health, his work ethic, and his family connections.  It was a great time, and I don't remember one single tear being shed.

A little after a year later I got a lovely letter from OHSU stating there would be a memorial service given on the university campus by all the future undergrad doctors in honor of all those people who had donated their bodies over the preceding year.  It was lovely.  And (here's the kicker) he couldn't get mad at me there was a service...the school did it.  All his wishes had been granted.

Oh, in the end there was a cremation, and the ashes were returned to me. I've shared some, while others declined the offer.  I've still got them, and would sometime in the future like to hand them over to the Navy and have him buried at sea.  I know he would like that...but, I'm just not ready to give them up yet.

And, there you have it, my plans are the same as my husband's, so expect no memorial, funeral or grave-side service.  But, dear family and some close personal friends, if you would like to come to a party, let me know I'll add you to the guest list...there will be food, booze and beer, lots of fun and laughter.  Just leave your tears at the door.

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