Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘grieve differently’

Celebration of Life

Posted by terrepruitt on May 28, 2011

This evening I went to a funeral of a man I did not know.  He was a former boss of my husband.  He was a huge influence in my husband’s life, in his career.  According to my husband he was more of a mentor and a teacher than a person that dictates tasks for you to carry out. He was one of those bosses that you are lucky to have when you get one.  A boss who actually inspires you to be a better employee, a better person.  This is what I thought my husband was saying when he talked about this man.  Even so a funeral is not something you look forward to.  They are sad and uncomfortable.  I am one of those people who believe that grieving is a very personal thing and we all do it differently.  If you are one that sits in the pew and weeps loudly, that is fine, but that is not to say that the person next to you with a dry eye cares any less.  Everyone grieves in their own way.  No one can say what is right and what is wrong.  Not having known the man nor his wife, I was a little curious when we walked up to the door and the smiling tiny figure introduced herself as his wife.  Her smile was so big and genuine.  She lit up more when she heard my husband’s name.  We stood right inside the doorway so I heard her greet everyone as they arrived.  She was happy to see and meet everyone that came up.  She was allowing herself to feel joy as the friends who loved her husband came to celebrate his life.

When she got up to speak that is what she said, she said we were there to celebrate his life.  She admitted that it was sad and that we will miss him, but he was so happy and positive the gathering was to be a celebration.  She said she was looking forward to hearing stories about her husband.  She said she was looking forward to the laughter.  She said that while there might be tears, while there will probably be tears, they will be tears of love.  Wow!  It was amazing.  “Tears of love.”  (I love that!) 

I am not sure, but it sounded like he might have been sick for a while and maybe even suffering so maybe not having him suffer was a relief.  I know I would hate to see my loved ones suffer.  I cannot speak to the actual background, I can only tell you what I saw and this woman was truly celebrating the LIFE (not the death) of her husband.

All the people who spoke confirmed what my husband said and more.  They all said that this man was positive and he always smiled.  A large group of his employees and co-workers were there and they all said he was a great boss.  It was awesome.  I really don’t think I have EVER heard so much laughter at a funeral.  It was amazing.  When someone dies, it is beyond sad, there are sooooo many reasons to be sad; they will be missed, they will miss things to come that are happening here and sharing that sadness is a way people begin the healing process and begin to move on.  There is also great healing to be had from a celebration.  Laughter is a great thing.  Tears are always going to come, but there will not always be a chance to sit and hear stories and tell stories and laugh about the stories.  It was nice that this gathering was held to allow for people in his life to speak of the great times they had with him.  The widow said she enjoyed the stories and the laughter.  Even if this celebration only gave her a few hours of relief from tears it really was a celebration of life.

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