The night my already-sick grandma took a turn for the worse, my husband asked if I thought I’d go to her funeral.
“Oh, hell no,” I said, without thinking.
He looked startled, there in our bathroom. We were getting ready for bed, letting our bodies slow down for the end of the day.
But now my heart raced with the thought of sitting cheek by jowl with my family and extended family.
I couldn’t imagine sitting in that room with any kind of peace.
Look, I love my family. If you met any one of them you would scratch your head at how a bunch of nice people could make my heart race. But oh, dear sweet Jesus, my family is complicated. Thinking about the funeral meant facing a Gordian knot of painful history.
And on the extended front, I like my cousins and my aunt and uncle, but seeing them can be awkward. I grew up across the country from them, and as a result, we don’t know each other well. That hurts. It hurts worse when we shake hands, make small talk, and say goodbye for another decade.
And I loved my grandmother, enjoyed her company, but even so did not know how to quit my bitterness towards her.
Mix all that in a hot dish and my decision was clear: stay home…
And yet it wasn’t so clear. I’m at The Mudroom today, talking about how grief can be complicated–and a blessing. Come along and read!