Saturday, July 3, 2010

Mourning in the morning.....


The tolling of the bell echoed down the block as we arrived to church. Several powerful "gongs", each spaced with long pauses in between. The pallbearers carried my uncle's coffin inside and the immediate family followed.

My uncle's funeral was this past Thursday morning.

I was dressed in a white-collared shirt, striped tie, dark gray suit, and black dress boots--the EXACT ensemble I wore to a job interview last December. Job interviews and funerals are practically the same for me anyways. *sigh*

During the sermon, Father told the crowd that death is very personal yet death is also universal because we all experience it at some point, directly or indirectly.

I kept my composure during most of the ceremony but tears ran down my stoic face when the choir sang "On Eagles' Wings".

And when the procession ended my other uncle said to me, "We tried." He was the one who drove my aunt, uncle, and I to and from chemo treatments. Even though my uncle had the cancer, we all went through it with him. It affected us too.

Countless hospital visits for bloodwork, shots, chemotherapy, CT scans, and other unexpected ailments. None of us got a break from it.

We all thought in the beginning that he'd beat the cancer or at least live much longer. But things don't always work out. That's a part of life....and now death.

He was my aunt's husband. Even though there wasn't a blood relation, he was still very much my uncle. I attended their wedding when I was five. And they were both my godparents.

Rest in peace, Uncle Bill. I love you.....

My Uncle Bill with me as a child

"And He will raise you up on eagle's wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun,
And hold you in the palm of His Hand."

24 comments:

stanw said...

Love the words of that hymn, there is something about rising up like an eagle that gives a person hope and the knowledge that we can rise above our circumstances. That is my hope and prayer for you, you got it in you I know.

It was a long road with your Uncle but he is at peace and rest now. You ended you post with "I love you...", that is so precious. We don't often get real close to a lot of relatives but so good you were close to them.

Take good care. Love the picture, that smile is something else!

naturgesetz said...

Thanks for sharing about the funeral with us. I think it is good when something at a funeral touches us the way "On Eagle's Wings" touched you. The fact that he has gone from your care into God's is a gain for him, but such a loss for you.

But if faith in resurrection is true, then the parting is not, "Farewell forever," but merely, "Bye for now."

*hugs*

Mona said...

I'm so sorry for your loss Dean. Your post is a lovely tribute to your Uncle, and I love seeing the picture of the two of you.

elsiee said...

I'm so sorry for your loss and that I can only offer you these simple words of consolation...

Peter said...

Dean, my condolences on your loss. Remember, he may be gone in the flesh but he'll be with you, in your mind, the rest of your life.

ricola said...

all my best to you and yours

Neurotic Workaholic said...

I'm really sorry, Dean. My condolences go out to you and your family. I wish I had something more comforting to write to you. But at least you got to be with your uncle before he passed away. I'm sure that meant a lot to him.

Prabha N. said...

Its a beautiful photo Dean. May he rest in peace. Hugs to you and your aunt!

madtexter (corey james) said...

Dean,

I hope you know that you are not alone in this. We may not have ever met, and may never, but your readers have connected with you.

You are a wonderful person, and a better man for being there for your family when they needed you most.

Big hug to you.

Steven Anthony said...

you are so rite...it affects everyone around. I went through it with mum, I understand...I am sending hugs, prayers and good thoughts to you and your family.

;)

R. Burnett Baker said...

Kind wishes again, Dean. Just before my Dad passed last month, the day before we had to cease life support, I wrote a poem about him, and that particular day:

resign and breathe



we can
only bow
to a life-passage
in time.

resign and breathe:

the sun
is on someone's
horizon.


Rick

Mike said...

:::Hug:::
Stay strong!

Dean Grey said...

Stan!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

naturgesetz!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mona!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Elsie!

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Peter!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ricola!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Neurotic Workaholic!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Prabha!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Corey! (madtexter)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Steven!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Rick!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mike!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I appreciate everyone's supportive words for my family and myself!

-Dean

martha miller (it's all art) said...

Dean,

I'm so sorry to hear about your dear uncle's passing. This has really been a transitional year for you and for your family. Take gentle care of yourself!!!

love
Martha

martha miller (it's all art) said...

P.S.

How fitting that your uncle's death happened around Independence Day. Grief mixes with relief when a loved one dies after a long illness (especially for someone like you who was a constant caregiver). When my father died, I felt a deep sadness, yet at the same time, I felt like I'd been set free. xo

Meeko Fabulous said...

Oh Dean, I'm so sorry to hear about your uncle. Sending hugs your way. If you ever feel you need someone to chat with, I'm never more than an e-mail away.

Artisticpixie said...

*hugs* My prayers are with you.

Dean Grey said...

Martha!

I feel like I've been set free as well but to what I'm not sure!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Meeko!

You're sweet....and fabulous!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Artisticpixie!

I appreciate that!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks to the three of you for the kind comments!

-Dean

RAD said...

Dean-- Im sorry for your lost..Wish we were closer so we cod hug it out and hold on... My prayers ae with you man....

Dean Grey said...

RAD!

My prayers are with you as well. I know you're struggling right now too.

-Dean

sam said...

Hey Dean, sorry I have been neglecting the blog for a while. Im sure you and your family will miss your uncle very much, its a lovely picture you have there you both look very happy. My deepest sympathies go out to you.

Dean Grey said...

Sam!

Thanks for that!

-Dean

Dean Scott said...

I see a strong bond of love between you and Uncle Bill in that photo. I pray the good memories still help to fill the void.

Dean Grey said...

Dean!

Thank you.

-Dean