Clarity and cleansing
Two words which come to mind while trying to pull together my thoughts. Never has it been more apparent to me how important sacred ceremony is in the process of seeking clarity and cleansing. Funerals and memorial services are vitally necessary....not just for "closure," which quite honestly is more elusive than we admit and sometimes never attainable, but for offering a venue to feel deeply, and to share it with a group who know where those feelings come from.
Yesterday's service was attended by people of all ages, who had their own memories of my mother and father in law. Some of them shared theirs publicly through tears during the service and many more let their remember whens slip out during the dinner and party afterwards. Song, stories, scripture, poetry.......were all part of a day which began fraught with potentially explosive emotions and ended up in enthusiastic conversations between family and friends taking place throughout the old house in Spencer's Island. The memorial service brought the old house to life once more with people who had all spent some time there in the past.
Clarity all around.........through the stories, scripture and poetry........through the conversations and songs.........it was happening all day long and well into the night.....
The service took place in the same church which they were married 56 years ago on the same day. At least two people who attended the memorial service and who travelled a distance to be in attendance, witnessed Buzz and Mim's wedding vows as well. 56 years ago....... That was the last time they had been in the little village church. It left them shaking their heads in astonishment that all those years had travelled by right under the bridge so quickly. Perhaps their clarity was striking and frightening........perhaps their thoughts turned to a mosaic of memories filtering through as the remembered long ago youth.
Cleansing......a release of pent up emotions, of grief untested because it was shoved down into the gut, of relief that it was time to let go and say goodbye, of feelings too raw to face were allowed to begin to seep out. The service was much more intense than anyone expected. This was mentioned by many afterwards. But because there was a sense of calm afterwards, it was understood by all how much it was needed.
Cleansing and clarity..........lead to resolutions and new perspectives. Who knew that death could be a path to peace for the ones left to carry on?
I have more to write........but will leave it here for now.....until I get back home.