When I was alive, I often wondered what it would be like the day of my funeral.
Would the sky be filled with dark clouds ominously warning of a storm to come, and a wind that blew so strong it went through your soul.
Would the trees be naked, their gold and rusted leaves on the ground circled around them in comfort and friendship.
The day of my funeral was a glorious day, the kind of day I enjoyed when I was alive.
Ironic really, I wonder if everyone gets their perfect day when their bereaved say good bye.
This was a day so beautiful it almost made me wish I was there. The sky was an intense blue and not a cloud dared to show itself.
The air was warm and so the breeze had a scent, a distinct presence when it danced across one’s face.
All the colors of the grass and the flowers were bright and seemed to be fueled with extra intensity.
The sun shone down as if to say ‘hope you’re having a great day’ and even the grounds of the cemetery normally a foreboding place, were happy and gay and ready to celebrate.
My coffin was very nice, a dark cedar with a rich lacquer covered in my favorite flowers, forget-me-not’s.
I had thought about cremation my whole life but I was given a plot as a gift, in a lovely spot right next to where my true love would also be buried.
The guest list was longer than I expected, and the guests were not who I expected.
My mother was wearing a beautiful black dress made from a light fabric that flowed in the breeze as she walked her face stained with tears, she seemed desperately upset. For a moment I wondered why. Why was my mother so devastated?
Then I realized it was because of me and my sudden departure from her. My mother in the moment she saw my coffin, realized she would never see me again and the grief was so strong I could hear her heart breaking.
My brother stood in silence wearing a dark suit and keeping all emotions at bay as he always did. He was never one for expressing anything, switched off and detached, maybe he thought it was cool I always thought he was cold. Why should today be any different?
Next to my brother was his daughter my niece, with whom I had shared a warm relationship. She was the first person to ever tell me she loved me and really mean it. I remember the day fondly, she was only three and when she looked at me and said “I love you” it filled me with more fear than I’d ever known. I realized at that point that I was responsible for another person’s feelings, a frightening realization indeed.
The biggest surprise for me that day was the presence of my father. Funny how some people ignore you in life, and then show up when you’re no longer there to greet them, like their doing you some kind of favor, trying to make up for lost time when the truth is, time has run out.
Merely obligation I suppose, but he seemed genuinely unhappy, a way in which I’d never seen my father before.
Finally, my husband stood next to my coffin looking lost and waiting to be found. It seemed unfair for him, as we shared a love that ran deeper than I ever imagined possible, between two people from different worlds.
I had been single my whole life, so when I met him I never dreamed I would love him as I did, and he returned that love so faithfully, the connection between us was strong, the bond so completely unbreakable.
I wanted to walk up behind him that summers day in my white dress he loved so much, in fact the same white dress I was buried in, with flowers in my long brown hair, I wanted to whisper in his ear “You look amazing today, if you weren’t already married I’d propose to you myself.”
He’d turn to look at me smiling and respond the way he always did “If I weren’t already married, I’d accept.”
His wedding ring reflected in the sunshine, the ring he never removed from his finger since the day I placed it there, and how guilty I felt watching it shine, as I never wore mine in the years we were married.
The priest blessed my coffin and began a prayer under the impression that it would advance my soul to heaven, and bring me everlasting peace.
The strange thing is, I already felt that peace long before I died, year’s before I died I felt an overwhelming feeling that everything was wonderful.
Now I wanted to let my parents and brother, my niece and that wonderful man I married know that they too could feel the magic that it’s so close, just across the border, merely a heartbeat away.
I thought maybe if I scream they’ll hear my voice in the breeze, there must be some way to let them know its okay.
Then I realized my journey with these people who loved me in strange ways, was over and the time had come for all of us to move on with this evolution of spirit.
I will miss them one and all, and the lessons of love they gave so generously have become a part of me, but now is not the time for reflection, as I did that in judgment and a new life has begun.
If ever we met again in different forms, different shapes and sizes, I will recognize you and we will take up where we left off.
Suddenly I felt myself floating, in the warm glow of the sunshine, bathed in that summer breeze, feeling happy peaceful and at ease.
As I floated, I faintly heard a voice “ashes to ashes dust to dust” and then, the place I was in was more beautiful than words can begin to express.