We started the weekend with a funeral. At my age I finally & fully feel how death is very much a part of life, how death literally defines life. It wasn’t so much a sad occasion, as the deceased died at the ripe old age of 97 after a long, full life, it was more a celebration of what he had meant to many people, evident in the large numbers who had come to pay their last respects. Also, and perhaps even more important, how he had made his life meaningful to and for himself.
He breathed his last breath in his own bed in his own house, where he had spent most of his adult-family-filled life. He left behind a wife, two happily married sons (twins) and five grandchildren. There were of course tears, which I think is a good thing: to be missed by your adult (grand)children is a privilege. As the eldest grandchild pointed out 'despite the fact we are at peace with your passing, we all miss you and will continue to do so'.
One remark made by one of his sons stood out for me: the relationship between father and son can develop into one of mutual, loving respect, once the son has become a man, if you share a common interest, something about which you are both passionate. Being a mother of two sons, this is something I am able observe in our own lives. Even though our boys are still boys, they're well on their way to adulthood.
The eldest shares the passion for hunting, the youngest for tennis, they all three love football; both boys still actively play football, my husband loves to watch (them and matches on TV, which is something I’ll not go into right now).
What I see is: woman like to talk – even in the midst of activities -, men prefer action, period. Continuing to ‘play’ in adulthood is how men communicate. Communication being the most difficult of activities we humans are entangled in, I feel fortunate they have these endeavors in common. I honestly believe it will (continue to) benefit their relationship with their father -and me- as it will their relationships with other people.
in the midst of life there is death and always a lesson to be learned; I will now stop muttering and leave you with Louis Armstrong’s version of ‘La Vie en Rose’