Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I'm a freak....

My Uncle - Dad's brother - sent me this package. It contained stuff from my Dad's service in Omaha Ne.

And it made me feel unreasonably pissed off.

I get that he was just trying to be nice... dunno why it made me mad. Guess death affects people in odd ways.

It had probably 50 of those in memoriam cards with Dad's info on the back and some scripture. And what exactly am I supposed to do with those? Pass them out like baseball cards to all my friends?

He included the song list from the service, a copy of the guest list, a copy of those people who donated money toward the service or made donations to the Parkinson's Disease Research Fund and a photocopied letter in old lady handwriting that read something like this:

"Dear Family Friends,

This Christmas will not be a happy one because my son was diagnosed with cancer and he isn't expected to live that long. Enjoy your family.

Love Alice"

Who is Alice? I have no idea. Poor thing.

My Uncle wrote a note asking if my sister and I had put aside any money for a marker at Dad's internment site? (nope - we wanted him in an unmarked grave - thanks for asking! Gawd. Stupid Uncle...) Said he sent pictures to my sister and to please call him if I had any questions.

And it all made me mad. I know, I know - unreasonable. He's trying to be nice. And how would he know what was supposed to be at the internment site? Well, I guess he could have asked the funeral home when he picked up the ashes for the service and then returned them for internment. Whatever.

I called the cemetery to find out what was going on with Dad's headstone/marker whatever it is. That is something Dad paid for in 1989. When I was putting all this in place and deciding between a mausoleum or internment of his ashes, I was gonna choose the mausoleum because it seemed sorta overkill, pardon the pun, to put his ashes in the ground but they said his name was engraved with his date of birth once he paid for his headstone/marker back in '89. (creepy)

I figured since it was already 1/2 way done, and it was something he picked out, he'd go in the ground and get to use the headstone/marker he chose and paid for.

Once I simmer down and hear back from the cemetery caretaker, I'll send my Uncle a nice and polite thank-you note with the cemetery headstone/marker information.

He'll never have to know that I'm feeling quite pissy about his stupid little death package. After all, Dad was his brother so there is no reason to be a big ol' ass on my part about it. Funny (not exactly funny ha-ha either) how those emotions sorta blind side you and come out sideways huh?

I'm sure my panties will smooth themselves out soon... until then I hope you are all warm and safe and sending kind thoughts to Alice, whoever and wherever she may be.


DebH said...

Old people are just a little different with things...its just a fact. Hopefully, I will do those odd weirdo disconnected things to my children too, they will have something to talk about then.
I also received this package from the funeral home of all the extras and wondered ..WHAT THE?? I guess they don't want to be hexed or anything by burning the remainder, but really...a collage or something? Weird I know, but whatdoyado?! ps..prayers to Alice and family

Shanster said...

Hi DebH - yes, I know. And it's not like they were trying to stir anything up or be mean or anything like that. I know. It's why it's weird I'd react that way.

I'm sure it's just the emotional baggage tied to my Pa and my family and the whole situation squirting out sideways...

At least I'm old enough that I don't react badly TO them ... I can take a breather and chill out and respond appropriately.

I'm sure I'll be a crazy old lady when and if I get there... so it pays to take a deep breath and let it go.

And yes, I hope Alice is coping o.k. with the loss of her son.

DebH said...

Hey Shanster
I gotta say, I am doing the same thing here with defensive sort of thing on the whole dealing with death thing. When someone says they visited the grave and they leave it for me to follow up with something,,well what they are asking is actually.."WHY isnt there a proper HEADSTONE...you insensitive Cold hearteed Wife YOU!!" I get a little touchy and mumble that we haven't gotten the right thing yet and we are doing this family thing and picking out the best rock by the cabin in the hills...and leave it at that. I should of had it done this last summer,,but I am just not dealing with that at all yet. Stupid,,but I do get defensive on it even though it is my fault. Now that doesn't say anyway you have handled things is weighing on you, I am just touchy with how someone else is looking at it sometimes. Then I think of Greg and realize..he wants the family trip with the kids and us doing it as a fun thing..Heaven help his Sister if she steps up and thinks we are slow and does something herself..BOY will that be a Bloodbath! OK..I feel better
Hope you do TOO!!?

Shanster said...

It's true. I think they probably think I'm rotten for not going to the service and being so "unavailable" and how awful she didn't love her Dad.

It's all such a personal, personal thing that is very individual to each person and very unique to each situation.

Whatever they think and whatever they send me has really NOTHING to do with me. They will think and do whatever they need to do for themselves... and won't ever really know what I felt or thought or did with this particular chapter.

You cold-hearted? Oh DebH, that could never be true in a million, ga-zillion years! You are a very kind and thoughtful person and I've never even met you live and in person. I can just tell...

Cheryl said...

I didn't know your father had passed away! Sounds like you're reacting the same way I probably will. My sister and I joke that, since she cut him out of her life and the lives of her children (he's nuts about his grandkids but with the alcohol, the foul language, the temper tantrums, etc. he is a really bad influence), he'll probably haunt the kids after he's gone. Hope not!

Grief is such a personal thing. It's not fair for others to pressure or judge one way or the other. Maybe because funerals are a collective way of saying goodbye. He must have just assumed you'd do this or that...

Shanster said...

Cheryl - yup, back in November but I don't think I posted much if anything?

I actually did think he was going to come for me right after he died and I had a hard time sleeping for awhile. He was so angry and he wanted to come live with me so much - so I thought once he wasn't constrained physically anymore he might move in! Silly as that sounds... we feel what we feel. shrug.

(tho' I haven't seen any signs so if he did move in, he's being awful quiet about it! grin)

Yes, I'm pretty sure my Uncle was trying to be a good family member and wasn't really trying to ruffle my feathers even tho' they got awful big and ruffly...