No one wants to go to a funeral, least of all me. However, I believe wholeheartedly in our customs for many reasons. All too often this past couple years, I have written about services I attended, some of which were truly sad.
Today, I want to write about another service - a Celebration. Oh, I know the newspapers proclaim the family is having a “celebration” of someone’s life. Or the clergy announces we are celebrating ones life, but most times, while I see lots of love, I do not see the look of celebration anywhere. This afternoon I saw both. I came away wanting to share the experience with you.
My ex-boss, a guy of whom I am truly fond, lost his mother Jean in her 92nd year. Wow!! 92. Automatically one thinks how fortunate a family is to have someone for all those years. And of course they were, but what struck me about the service as the children and grandchildren spoke was the word LOVE. The personalization of the service was perfect. While I never met the woman I came away wishing I had known her. She wore gold shoes and glittery sweaters. She loved to dance. She was involved in her grandchildren and great grandchildren’s lives. It is obvious she was fun. She lived life to the fullest. She was a great Mom… Grandmom…..and Gr-Grandmom.
A vibrant woman minister spoke of celebrating life, sharing some personal anecdotes. She also noted, in their church, they prefer to have a “Service of Thanksgiving for the Life” of the person who passed. A marvelous way to celebrate was my thought as I listened. There was a young man, whom I believe, was a grandson who sang several musical tributes, two at the end. The service was over.
People began looking around for directions to leave to leave when a daughter stood and said, “In our family we have a tradition. At all the parties, weddings, any gathering, my mother would lead a dance to the song, “We are Family.” The entire family joined in. We have decided to end our service with a dance. Should anyone wish to join us, feel free.”
With that the music began to play. Jean’s family came dancing down the aisle, led by Jean’s sisters, 7 children, spouses, 18 grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren joining the fun. In seconds those of us not involved were clapping and dancing in our seats. What a joyful and super family tradition. The program cover was a beautiful picture of a beautiful woman smiling and waving. In that instance I saw this pretty woman smiling and waving as she led her family in her last dance. People left the service smiling.
On the way home I thought a lot about the woman I did not know. I would not have to tell her what a wonderful family she has, she already knows that. I began to think, that is exactly the kind of CELEBRATION I would like when it is my day to leave. I have a great family, but it is small so I got wondering, do you think she might lend me hers for the day???
Of course, I certainly do not intend to need them anytime soon, infact until I am 92.... and that is a very long time. It doesn't hurt to plan though. Just musin!!!
© 2012 Musings by Marilyn - 8/1/12