Thursday, January 26, 2006

Nothing about knitting....

I feel out of touch a bit today. I've been tied up the last day and a half with a death in the family (not a close relative, one I didn't even know in fact). I hate when I haven't been able to check the news online, or to check in on my favorite blogs I've been today I'm trying to catch up.

I didn't know the person who died, he was someone in my SO's family, and I had never met him. But every funeral I attend brings back all the memories and sadness of when my father died. I was 20, he was 49. It will be 18 years this Saturday actually, and it almost feels like it was yesterday....or maybe the day before. I can't believe after all this time that the sadness still doesn't go away. The person that died was 73 and while of course that's sad for the family, I can't help but feel jealous that they had him till he was 73, I only had my dad till he was 49. He (the one who died-we'll call him Bob, although that's not his real name) got to see so many things, so many grandchildren and weddings and the like, and my dad didn't get to see any of that. I was 20, my younger sister was 17 and my older sister was 24. We've all since been married (divorced- me), had children, had life altering things happen, etc. He's missed it all, and we have missed sharing it with him. Our children will grow up never knowing their real grandfather, although they have a wonderful step-grandfather who, other than my daughter (she's 10) will be known always as grandpa.

I did ok at the funeral until at the cemetary, the wife was presented with an American flag for "Bob's" service in the military. I lost it. Tears were streaming down my face, for this man I had never met, but more so for the family left behind, whom I don't even really know. But there's something symbolic about the presentation of an American flag to a loved one. It's so final-THE END. It's never because they're alive and well, it's always because they're gone, never to be hugged or seen again, and the flag is the only thing they can give to the family as a token or remembrance of his service. It's a shame that no one ever thought to give him a flag, before he died, as a kinda "atta boy, you done good" at a time in his life when he could have appreciated the recognition. You can't help but wonder what they do with the flag, is that really supposed to make them feel better about their loss, or do they just toss it in the corner when they go home, and try to grieve in their own way?

It's been a pretty emotional week, having also attended a wedding over the weekend for two people who seem to hate each other most of the time, and yet still managed to pull off a wedding, however short lived it turns out to be. I'm in a pretty solid relationship yet that whole wedding thing seems to evade us still, and after answering a gazillion questions about when, where and all that at the wedding-cuz that's always natural to turn to all the single people there and find out why they haven't joined the "marriage sucks" club-and then answering all the same questions again to the family at the funeral, I can't help but ask myself why not yet either? But it's not only up to me, there's two of us, and I feel that effort needs to be put forth by both of us. I'm not 24 with nothing else going on in my life. Been there, done that, so I have real life priorities that do not revolve around how much lace I can fit onto my body, or crown/no crown for the top of my head. But that doesn't stop everyone from telling us how much cheaper it is for us to live as man and wife, and how they have scheduling issues so it can only be this time of year or that time of year. I want to scream and tell them to live a day in my life, which still revolves around attornies, custody issues, psycho obsessed exes and the like, so when WHEN do I have time to plan for my future??!! I'm still trying to figure that out.

Tomorrow will be a better day, and for the record NO, we haven't set a date yet. But feel free to ask again, I'm sure you will anyway and someday that answer will change.

I'm sorry to hear such a painful anniversary is coming up, but thank you for sharing the memory of your father with us. He must have been a wonderful guy to turn out such a wonderful daughter!!! There is no doubt in my mind that he is proud of you yet, and of the granddaughter he's watching over.
Be gentle with yourself, especially as the anniversary of your father's death comes closer. That grief will always be there, and feel even sharper when there's something like this funeral to trigger your memories.

And a wedding needs to be for the two of you, on your own time and when you are ready. Not as a favour to other people on their schedules.

Take care of you, and get lots of knitting done!
I think I know how you feel. My mom will be gone 4 years next month and it has been very difficult.

When people give you a hard time about not setting a date just look at them and ask for a donation for the wedding fund - that will shut them up I'm sure.

Keep knitting and I hope to see you at Caribou next Wednesday.
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