We were out of town to attend Grandma Bernadette’s funeral. Her church service was beautiful, and the reception afterwards filled her home with many people. There was hardly any room to move around — it was that crowded with her family and friends. I kept looking around the room, and I couldn’t help thinking that she would have enjoyed the gathering very much.
I think we should have our funerals before we die. That way, we can be there with ALL the people who would gather for us if we were to pass away. It’s funny (in sad way) that people will stop their lives, call in sick to work, drive for hours, hop on a plane, cancel other plans, etc. to attend a person’s funeral… but when that same person just 4 months ago invited them to a family reunion or a birthday party, or even something as simple as going out to lunch, they couldn’t make the time to be there. But they will stop everything to attend that person’s funeral. I’m guilty of this, too. I’m not throwing stones. I’m just observing something that is all too common.
One of my most favorite shows growing up was Little House on the Prairie, and there is this one episode that totally pertains to what I’m saying in this post. There was this little old lady who was getting on in her years, and she kept writing to her kids to come see her. All she wanted was for them to make the trip to see her, to stay a few days and bring her grandchildren. But they always wrote back that they were too busy, that maybe “next year” they would make the trip. And the old woman was very fed up with them and their excuses. So she got an idea. She had a letter sent to her children informing them that she had passed away, and the funeral day and time had been set. So on the day of the funeral, she hid and watched everyone mourn for her. Then she came out to join the reception party. Her children were furious at her trick! But she said, “It was the only way you’d come to see me!”
I think about that episode now. A lot.