Skip to main content

12 Years, 11 Months

That's how long it's been since the last family funeral. It's funny, because just last week I was recollecting my Grandpa's visitation. I wrote:

The visitation before my grandpa’s funeral is actually a fond and pleasant recollection. Yes, it was somber. I remember seeing his body, my grandma looking small beside the casket. And then we went upstairs. To the room where family gets to graciously retire. In this case, the room where all the cousins get to play euchre. It was a weird mix of requisite quiet and the inevitable laughter of having all of us together. I remember flipping through a Reader’s Digest from a coffee table, quickly bored and uninterested in staying, knowing we couldn’t really have any fun, yet desperately wanting to avoid the reality of death that was playing itself out downstairs. I guess the pleasantry of this memory is that we were all together, and I was young enough to be content with that, and of all my grandparents, this was the one I knew least. So it could have been much worse, but it wasn’t. It was almost like a family reunion with a bit less laughing and just as much food.

In the morning, I am getting on a plane for Ontario. For a funeral. This time it's my Grammie. This time it was expected. There will probably not be any cousins. I don't know if we have been able to reach the one that I have on this side of the family. I don't think I'll be able to hide in the relatives' room this time around. And I don't feel any more prepared for dealing with a grieving family. I love my family. I grieve with them. I feel broken for my Grampie. And I feel useless. But I also feel peace. And I want to be there.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Fostering FAQ: How Can You Say Goodbye?

It seems I finally have something(s) to say... Here's the first in a short (or maybe long?) series on Fostering FAQs. If you've got a question to add, feel free to comment/email/text/message me and maybe the next post will be in response.

--

8:30 am on Day 4 of parenting. I woke up in a panic two hours ago because I remembered that there is a baby and I am responsible for her (at least at 6:30am, when the man beside me will snore through anything). Now, I have put on clothes and eaten breakfast. The dogs are walked, there is a loaf of banana bread in the oven. My tea is steeping. Most importantly, Dream Baby is already down for her first nap.

Despite my morning efficiency, I'm already beginning to see that even with the happiest, most easygoing, and smiliest baby, like we somehow managed to be given, parenting is a grind. On Friday night, I couldn't join friends for $5 pints at a local joint. Instead, I blearily washed the same 8 bottles again, and then made another ba…

Fostering FAQ: How Long Will She Stay/Will You Adopt Her?

Our first foster baby came with about 18 hours notice; it was respite care, which means we had him for a few days while his regular foster family had a break/dealt with a family emergency. He stayed 3 nights, long enough to come to church and have a dozen people cooing over his little sleeping cheeks.  With each new visitor to our quiet corner, I explained again that he would be going back to his foster family the next day.

Barely a week later, we got a 9am phone call with a fostering request and by the same afternoon, we were snuggling her. This time, we had her for 4 days before church came around. Again, our community was keen to see the little one we had in tow. Again, the question, "How long will she stay?" And this time, "Are you going to adopt her?"

--

Here in Toronto, when a child is placed in foster care, it is always for an indefinite length of time. It depends on the parents' situation, and whether they are able to make a safe home environment for th…

What About Travis!?

I just watched Hope Floats, the second movie in my I-really-need-to-vegetate night. Now that we have more than three channels, there are so many quality programs on TV! Like movies in the middle of the week. I enjoyed many of the lines in this movie, including:

"I went home and told my mama you had a seizure in my mouth."
(referring to her first french-kissing experience)

"Dancing's just a conversation between two people. Talk to me."
(the conversation in our living room then went,
Girl 1: Only Harry Connick Jr. could say that line without it being incredibly cheezy.
Boy: Without it being cheezy? That's all I heard. Cheez, cheez, cheez.
Girl 2: Yeah, but it was sexy, sexy cheez...sigh.)
"Better do what she says, Travis. Grandma stuffs little dogs."

Bernice: At home we had a pet skunk. Mama used to call it Justin Matisse. Do you think that's just a coincidence? All day long she would scream, "You stink Justin Matisse!" Then one day she just…