Thank you all so much for your kind messages. I am printing those out for the family to read.
If I'm able, I want to say or read something at her funeral. I may also try to sing a lullaby, Sure a Little Bit of Heaven, which she used to sing to us as children and which we have sung to our children and many other children during these long years. Not religious, but one of the songs she sang so often that meant so much to us and which we will always remember her by. I'm not sure if I be able to or not. My brother has arranged a special musical medley for himself on trombone and my young great-nephews on trumpet of her favorite hymn, I Walk in the Garden Alone, and another of her and our favorite lullabies, Tura Lura Lura, to play graveside. It turns out each of us had individually sang that and other songs to her in the ICU. When I did, she looked up with a big smile and said, "Thank you." As a family, we also sang "In the Garden" during her last moments with my son-in-law providing forgotten words as we faltered, and so very very heartfelt. I so hope she knew we were trying to make her passing easier for her and let her know we loved her so much in return we were willing to let her go.
The Brass Trio will play at a short the graveside service. The church is then providing lunch for family and close friends. After that ... I guess we try to get on with living our lives as Mother would definitely want us to do, though, I have been talking a lot to her since. I hope she hears. Otherwise, I've been pretty okay - mostly - profound sadness erupts momentarily into warm tears - then I go on okay - so far. So much so it both surprises and upsets me. Is this what profound grief is like? Is God letting me handle it a bit at a time as I can or will? Perhaps. But I don't know how I'll get through the funeral.. Will I be a lump of uncontrollable sobs or sit straight up and stoic, as my mother always was. I don't know how old I was before I saw her actually cry. She cried more as the years passed and she lost her parents and siblings. I so hope she is with them again. I would hate to think and don't want to even know how many tears she shed for and over me. Millions, I'm sure.
Dad is overwhelmed with the hyper-activity by way too many people in his house immediately following her death, which briefly explodes in grimaces as he bites his words to most who are just trying to be helpful but whose timing has not been good nor wise. We've started disappearing ASAP to give him the space and silence he needs to emotionally process the profound reality of his loss. As it was certain individuals jumped immediately into house-cleaning / prepare for possible visitors mode as soon as we got home from the hospital, I just realized that we as a family didn't even get nor have we had the opportunity to simply sit and reminisce and decide what next, and haven't since then either. That disturbs me. We should have done that BEFORE we spoke to the minister this morning. What we all need, my Dad in particular needs, is for everyone to back off with probably wholly unnecessary hyper-cleaning and rush to detail food and drink plans for visitors who MIGHT come to the house, and to slow down and just let all of us have the quiet and inactive time to reflect and deal with Mom's passing. As far as I and probably Dad are concerned, if someone drops by to pay their respects, they get the house as it comes, which is always a lived-in but comfortably clean, only slightly cluttered state with the day-to-day minutea to begin with. My sister-in-law, whose way to deal with this is too keep as active and busy as possible, and to assign tasks to the rest of us in order to accomplish her goals, has been the source of a lot of the activity. She will leave Dad a REALLY scrubbed and clean house even if no one shows up [which, with 2 minor exceptions and the look of the house wouldn't matter to them anyway, is what happened after all]. She also insists on doing the cooking and shopping, jumping in and and often taking over what I and/or my sister and/or daughter would otherwise do and will be responsible for in the future, but with far more energy, expertise, skill and creativity than certainly I, at least, have ever possessed. I and we all very much appreciate and thank her for her energetic, caring and heroic efforts, but to be honest, totally spic and span clean house is the LAST thing I am concerned about at this moment in time. I love her dearly, but it's just way too much far too soon for Dad - and for me.
Mom would probably find it all instructive and amusing that someone finally found a way to make some of us more inactive types (read that moi) shape up and clean up NOW!
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