Post-Funeral Thoughts

A life well-lived is one sensible decision after the next. A life well-lived is full of kept promises, even when they hurt. A life well-lived ends and those left behind cry, but their tears are not bitter, but rather sad tears of loneliness and loss. We cry because we realize just the swiftness of our journey on this planet, how few sunsets remain in our lifetimes, how much time we have squandered.

Her life well-lived was extravagant, full of beauty. She loved her husband, her children, her grandchildren. She loved her garden. She filled her house with lovely objects and her closets with fashion.

I will remember her jet-black hair, her meticulous make-up, her shiny bright smile. I did not walk up to the casket to peer at her lifeless form. I want to remember her alive and beautiful.

Watching her husband of 53 years stand at the white casket lined with pink broke my heart a little. He stood so tall, so distinguished in his suit, so composed, so still. He stepped back, then closer again. I averted my eyes from this private moment. He kept his promise to her, though the last years were bleak and her mind had fled. He was faithful and strong.

One of my other uncles delivered the eulogy, a message full of scripture and poetry and reminders of God’s love for us. The flowers were so gorgeous. I rested my gaze on them while I listened to the powerful words of a man I admire and love. I thought, “I would like him to do my funeral,” and then I realized that I would have to die young or he will have to live to be 150.

Funerals and weddings . . . so much alike, so vastly different. Flowers everywhere, men in suits. One is the beginning, the other the end. And endings are always so sad that if I start to cry, I may never stop.

10 thoughts on “Post-Funeral Thoughts

  1. “We cry because we realize just the swiftness of our journey on this planet, how few sunsets remain in our lifetimes, how much time we have squandered.” How true those words are.


  2. Funerals always make me so introspective.

    And now you’ve just reminded me that in a little over a week our family will mark the one year anniversary of the death of my mother-in-law. It’s amazing as I think about all the things I wish I could ask her now…and realize it is too late.

    For everything there is a season…


    Tammy ~@~


  3. Perfectly written. I am the ultimate at avoiding funerals. I refuse to go most of the time because I’d prefer remembering that person the way they were living. Otherwise its heartbreaking and morbid to me.


  4. Maybe I am nuts, but I think funerals are awful. I don’t ever want one nor does any of my family members.

    We want a simple dinner party in our memory where drinks and happy memories are shared.

    I hate when I have to look at a dead body. Let me remember the living moments 🙂


  5. Oh goodness…you never mentioned whose funeral this was. I apologize.

    My heart goes out to you and your loss.

    I hope you have found peace and joy in the memories and that, for you, the service was heartwarming and comforting.


    (forgive me, I feel awful)


  6. I’m really sorry for your loss. You probably really miss her. You described her as though you do.


    P.S. Amazing writing. It almost brought me to tears.


  7. Wow! This was pure poetry! Your description was so perfect I almost felt I was there, next to you, watching this happen right in front of my eyes.

    I’m so sorry for your loss, whoever she was to you; and I hurt for the tall, distinguished man in a suit. He must feel so alone.

    Could you tell him a perfect stanger sends him warm hugs and admiring kisses? He reminds me of my granfather, who raised me, and then died ten days after I moved to United States from México, and I was unable to be at his funeral.

    Sad memories for a cold and snowy day.


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