This is NOT Beautiful

My latest post is up over at the Rocky Mountain Moms Blog this morning, should you feel the urge to go check it out.

I went to my friend’s funeral services yesterday afternoon, and it was, in a word, terrible. I have never really understood why people describe such events as “beautiful;” there was nothing beautiful about it. Yes, the flowers were pretty. Yes, the chapel looked nice, despite the fact that they grossly underestimated the amount of people attending and therefore there was not room for everyone. Still and all, it was funeral; the flowers did nothing to disguise the fact that just underneath them was the dead body of someone who was loved. There is nothing beautiful about a funeral, in my opinion. I will say that it was a very honest service; his partner of 12 years, who because of his addictions hadn’t spoken to him in a year and has been raising their kids on her own, spoke from the heart about how he really was, and that she loved him so much anyway. It was-terrible.

I was able to see my friend, and that was good; she was holding up okay on the surface, introducing herself as M’s mom to the many people who didn’t know her and putting on the professional facade. When she saw me she kissed me on the mouth, looked closely into my eyes and didn’t say a word, just kept going to the next person; it made me very, very glad I had gone, even while my heart was breaking for the pain I saw there. I also saw M’s step-dad, who is also a friend, and again, sometimes words aren’t necessary.

I don’t know…I don’t want to go into it all because it is too sad. There is a lot to process, and I am just not able to do so in a coherent manner. Instead, I will copy for you what was written on the back of his funeral program, and maybe it will break your heart a little like it broke mine, but it sums M. up just about perfectly.

Some people
Test everything by pushing the limits…
Dancing in danger
Eventually they crash. If you could ask them for honesty, they would say…
Please don’t save me,
even when I beg you.
It’s my fear that makes me forget that
I don’t need saving.
You are not responsible for my pain.
Sometimes I want to blame you and even
worse, you continually blame you.
But living can be hurtful and if
your need to protect me me prevents the natural
process of action/re-action, I am robbed of
my power. Which is worse, a broken body
or a paralyzed soul? Let me fall,
so I know who I can become.
Love does not rescue, it ALLOWS.

~Cass, 2000

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11 thoughts on “This is NOT Beautiful

  1. The poem is amazing. I’m glad you went since it meant so much to your friend. It is a heartbreaking story, but the good news is, no one was trying to paint over the truth. I love you.

  2. I agree with April in saying that it sounds as if at least there was far more truth in that funeral than can be found at most others.I am sorry for your loss. Death robs so many. Be gentle with yourself as you grieve.

  3. That was very touching.You are right, funerals are not beautiful at all.I’m racking my brain to try to remember who I said something to the other day, which that poem summed up perfectly. I didn’t say it nicely though. I was really angry at the time. It had to do with some trouble Mark and his brother were getting into.

  4. Thanks for sharing those powerful words…funerals are hard, life is messy and often we are left behind to pick up the pieces, but having good friends there with you is something to cherish.~K

  5. Big breath . . . “I have never really understood why people describe such events as “beautiful;” there was nothing beautiful about it.”We have no words . . . commenting on flowers is all there is. It all tugs, pushes, pulls . . . doesn’t it? Thought with you . . .

  6. I don’t know who said funerals were ever beautiful. I too am glad to see that the truth wasn’t glossed over. That poem was lovely.

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