"Reclaiming the Tradition, Bringing Funerals Home..." |
Karen and Annie, please accept our thanks for your perfect help in our hour of need, and good wishes for your sacred work with all families in the future. My sister still talks about what it meant to her and how your kindness and guidance has sustained her on her return home. Your work has helped our whole family and that is a blessing.
With Karen and Annie's calming and competent presence, our family could settle into our own world of grieving, telling stories, rubbing Grandma's feet for the last time and admiring her beautiful face and hands, and welcoming family, friends and neighbors into the home. We could do the work we needed to do because Karen and Annie were doing their work so gently and clearly. And now, our family can tell other families about our experience. We can let them know that dealing with a death can feel slow, gentle, celebratory, participatory, humorous, and most of all, natural.
Even though Mother’s death was inevitable, it was not something that I wanted to imagine. I have avoided funerals. I did not instantly welcome a home funeral. Fortunately my sister and niece gently shared information about Blessing the Journey. Instinctively I knew it was the right thing to do, for everyone involved. We moved ahead into new territory. Karen and Annie expertly shared their wealth of knowledge, skills and sensitivities. Blessing the Journey’s guidance was very responsive to our needs. Our Mother’s passing became an act of creation and participation. Karen and Annie’s skills gave our family a profound experience.
I washed and dressed Ken and positioned his body. It was important to Ken and me that our children have this experience as we felt it would help their grieving. In our own home I felt free to talk, laugh, cry, share, retreat, contemplate, while maintaining the closeness I craved with Ken. Our last visual of Ken is lying amongst loving remembrances from dear friends and family, surrounded in pine boughs. This is a far cry from impersonal sounds, smells and furnishings. There have been many people who have thanked me for having the home funeral and for the opportunity it provided them.