Monday, October 1, 2007

Fitful prayers

I’m floundering. My stomach is upside down and inside out. My brain is flinching and I can’t make decisions for myself which makes me feel frail. I hate feeling frail.

I want to be of a strong constitution. Robust. Stalwart. A pillar that the frail can lean on.

I am certainly not that.

I have decided not to go to the funeral, for the moment. I’ll check in again in a few paragraphs and see how many times I’ve changed my mind and where it settles. My family is…difficult. (As in carting my pedophile grandfather around to all family events and doting over him as if he didn’t use his granddaughters as sexual objects. He had a stroke 4 days before my wedding, eleven years ago and has been imprisoned in his body and wheelchair ever since. God intervened and did what my aunt and uncles would not do, by placing value on the victims and removing the threat of my grandfather from the children surrounding him. ) I have decided that seeing them would not help my dithering heart. Nor would being present at the funeral tomorrow do anything to help theirs.

My cousin is surely broken in so many ways, today. She had a viewing of the body, which after much counsel, she decided was entirely necessary for her. I respect that. I can’t begin to direct her one way or another. There is no etiquette on how to accept that your husband has been killed. She’ll have to make her own strange march toward the truth. The facts that are emerging make it a rugged trail, indeed. He wasn’t wearing a seat belt. He was drunk. He hit a truck. The two people in that truck remain in critical condition. They will never be the same. And she is left to make all of this right, somehow.

Her six year old son told my mother, “I want to tell God that I’m mad and I want my Dad back! But I’m afraid he’ll send my Daddy to hell.”

Later, her four year old son crawled into my mom’s lap and said, “I know why you’re here. It’s ‘cause my Daddy’s dead and I’m sad and you love me.”

Oh the perfect truth in innocence.

Whatever my feelings toward the deceased, (selfish jackass), he was loved. And those people who embraced the arduous task of loving him have lost all of the potential they had placed on him. They are heart broken and empty and for them I’m sad.

I pray that comfort comes to them in thick blankets and offers reprieve from the onslaught of the storm for a while.
I pray for sleep that is smooth and redeeming.
I pray for the kindness of strangers to fragrance their lives for a little while, and for the kindness of loved ones to remain constant and unwavering.
I pray for understanding to come in whatever attire, to be invited, welcomed, accepted, so that the hard lessons can be learned.
I pray for peace in the hard days ahead when truth is an ill-mannered bedfellow.
I pray for the sins of the father to be just his and not the sons’ bitter inheritance.

And that’s all I have to say about that…

8 comments:

Christine said...

i just caught up right now. this is so awful. your poor cousin. this is just so sad and terrible and i am not finding the right words here. . .

Mad Hatter said...

This is my first visit here. I have just read all the posts on this page. May you and your family find peace at this devastating time.

furrow said...

Oh, Emily. This is my first visit in a few days. I'm so sorry for what your family is going through. This is ... just tragic.

painted maypole said...

What a hard decision to make. You can offer your love and support to your cousin in many other ways.

Peace for you all...

Jen M. said...

Yes - peace to you, your cousin, and her children.

And I can't help it - I am glad that man is in a wheelchair.

Lori said...

Families are so complicated, and deaths only seem to rip open all of the old wounds we thought had healed.

I pray for you all, and especially those sweet little boys. Their lives will never be the same now....

Emily R said...

I'm so sorry I've been away for a few days. Funerals are about the living, not the dead. This is your decision, no one else's.

But, oh, those poor kids. And your cousing. Oh, oh, oh.

Hannah said...

I've been away too. I'm so sorry that this senseless thing had to happen.