This week has been very long...very tiring....and very frustrating. To bury your father in law, of whom you love, is not something I would ever want to do again. E.V.E.R. If I could, I would go back to the day before he died, made him seek medical attention, and prayed over and over that he would be fine and with us for at least another 20yrs. But I cannot do this.
I found out a few things about myself that surprised me. I have been told that I am strong. But I never believed it. And after planning a funeral for a loved one, I realized that I will grieve yet I will survive. I bucked up and did what I had to do for my family. I believe that my lovely father-in-law was the source of my strength. He held me up when I felt down. Well...him and God because I think he saw me weak a few times and he lifted up my chin and patted my shoulders and sent me on my way. I am so very thankful for that. And my friends, oh how I thank God for our friends. They supported me and loved me and strengthened me. I only hope that I am as good as a friend as all of you (them!). And of course, my family. I can only say that I am so lucky and we are all sooooo loved. It makes my heart swell with pride. It is such a relief.
I also realized that just because a man puts on a robe, makes a vow to God and calls himself a Priest does not make him nice. In fact, I realized that they can be quite mean. And quite judgemental. And quite insensitive. And a certain Priest that just so happened to be the man I trusted to send my father in law off in a Honorable way can turn that into his own personal sermon and can quickly forget what his purpose of this sermon is. I am livid mad at this Priest right now. And I know that I should not judge the Catholic religion because of one rotten man that I have encountered but I must say, today it is very difficult for me to remember that he is the bad egg...not the church. Rest assured that this man will get a letter expressing my disappointment in his manners and I will remind him that a grieving family does not typically know exactly how to plan a funeral in a few short days. And that family does not deserve a coward of a man hiding behind his robe treating them with so much disgrace. I hope that my letter will help a different family when they have to deal with his anger. Unbelievable.
My family is doing okay. We are all sad and we are trying to remember that he is in a better place. You see....a quick little background on my father in law will help you understand our comfort a little more. He grew up with very strict Catholic parents. His father was harder on him then his other siblings. He struggled with his relationship with his dad. He married and provided for his family well but had a lot of stress with his job. He made his mistakes with parenting, as we all do. After 30 plus years of marriage, his wife decided that she didn't want to be in the place that she was. A bitter separation and a traumatic divorce left him sad and lonely. He managed to become closer to his children and grandchildren and kid-in-laws with a broken heart. He never healed from the hurt and deception. He would put on a brave front but deep down, he was lonely and sad. It bothered the hell out of me that he was alone at times. Anyway, long story short......he is now, after 7 years of pain, free from the hurt. He is flying high and he met God in person. He is happy. I know this. I have seen the signs. You may think this is crazy or maybe you don't, but my father in law let us know in subtle ways that he is very happy and we shouldn't worry about him any longer. We all used to struggle with his unhappiness, always wanting to ease the pain, and now we don't have to worry any longer. But I can say this.....he will be sorely missed.
The path of grief is funny. I find myself sad, mad, guilty and all the other emotions that I am too tired to remember. I am on the road to healing, as is my family. It could be scary at times but I am confident now that I can handle it. I hope you are all well and I will be back very shortly. Forgive me for being away from your blogs. I can assure you that I would have rather be visiting you then planning a funeral.
Love you all and thank you for your friendship.