Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Death and the People Around You

I often get the feeling that you never know someone until they die.  When you go to the funeral there are all kinds of pictures and stories of the deceased that you never knew about.  For example, I attended the funeral of a neighbor a while ago.  We had lived next to him for many years but didn’t know him that well.  They had a small biography of the person and I learned many facts about him; so many that I wish I had known him better.

The same is true when a family member dies, although it’s not really the person who dies who you find out about, it’s the people around them.  As you may know, my father passed away recently and my stepmother has shown me some things that I really don’t want to have to deal with.  I don’t know if it was my father or my step mother, but my mother was “banned” for lack of a better word from going to the funeral.  My parents have been divorced for over 40 years, but they were still on speaking terms probably because of my brother and me.  But I thought my Dad was okay with things.  However, through the years, I have seen some things that I just thought were petty and sad.  For example when I got married I had the ceremony at my mother’s house.  It’s a beautiful house and she and my step father entertained there a lot.  My husband and I were trying to save money and so we had it there.  I talked to my father about it and he was fine for a while and then at the last minute told me he was uncomfortable being there.  Yet when my brother was married, all the parents and step parents flew to Kansas and had a grand old time. 

So now we come to the end of my father’s life and I am going to deal with my stepmother without my Dad around to get in the middle if things get strange.  And they will.  I suppose I could not deal with her at all, but that seems a little harsh, after all she was very good to my father and took care of him for the last years of his life with no complaints, and I guess I would feel kind of guilty not doing anything for her because of that.  Ah, such complications of life.

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