Saturday, October 21, 2006

Paying Respects...

We attended a family funeral yesterday and I got to thinking about the greetings given at funerals. It's awkward to approach a member of the grieving family and know exactly what to say... "Hello, it's good to see you." Well, that doesn't seem quite right... Yes, it IS good to see them but never under such conditions. The deceased family usually says, "Thank you for coming." I always reply with, "I'm glad to be here."... Well, yes I am glad to be there for them but NO, I'm never GLAD to attend a funeral. I overheard one attendee say to a family member, "I'm sorry." That's an appropriate thing to say I guess, but I tend to say the same exact thing when I've accidently bumped into someone or interrupted a conversation... And "I'm sorry for your loss." Sounds so trite and greeting card'ish to me.

Here are some other comments people make at funerals that don't make much sense...

"Is there anything I can do?"... Well no, unless you can either raise the dead or turn back time so you could've convinced him to have quit smoking, exercised more and lived a healthier lifestyle... But thanks for asking!

"He will be missed.".... Ya think!?... Actually we're missing him right now... What do you mean by will be?

"How are you?"... Uh, my throat's a little tight... I'm not sure these shoes go with this dress... I should've eaten some breakfast this morning... AND I'm wondering how the hell I'm going to manage without my Dad (or my Husband) in my life anymore!.... Other than that I'm fine, how are you?

"Let me know if you need anything!"... Yeah, sure... You've been such a comfort thus far I'll be sure to call you right up when the lonliness seems more than I can bear.

I hope to NOT have to attend anymore funerals for awhile but I'm interested to know if any of you out there know what to say in these situations... My preferred approach was to simply walk up and give a huge heartfelt hug, but I'm not even sure that was enough.

3 Comments:

Blogger lime said...

yes, the hug. funreal's are just awkward. i usually prefer some private time with the grieving, letting them tell me favorite stories about their loved one. or just sitting and letting them cry. just 'being' together and giving them freedom to express what they need to express.

9:49 AM, October 21, 2006  
Blogger Margie Blystone said...

Lime, ours resulted in family time back at the house where we told stories and laughed... It was admittedly the best part of the day... It's just the initial greeting part at the funeral service that's so terribly uncomfortable... Wouldn't you agree?

10:21 AM, October 21, 2006  
Blogger lime said...

i agree completely

7:57 AM, October 23, 2006  

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