I don’t know anyone that likes to go to a funeral. Oh wait, my great-aunt, did. When I was nine and my uncle had passed away, she would go room to room and talk about how she knew so and so. In fact, if no one was occupying the space, she would walk right up to the coffin and act like she was grieving. It was odd at best. But, she was a really strange women, so I guess it fit her personality nicely.
One of my friends lost her sister a week ago. Yesterday, we gathered to celebrate her life. Watching her hurt is difficult. You see, her sister was young. Fought cancer for twenty-seven years and beat stage four several times. She was a warrior. I sat in a state of observation. I watched her special-needs brother lovingly comfort his wife. I listened as my friend’s niece spoke so eloquently about her mother. I held the hand of one of my high school girlfriends as we both were moved by the words and thoughts of those who loved this amazing woman.
When my friends are hurting, I struggle with knowing what to do. I can’t fix this particular situation, but I can show up. Be present. Be available. Making it a habit to simply send a text of support and letting her know she is in my thoughts. There is no replacement for those that we love who transition, but there is comfort that while we don’t have them physically, their spirit resonates through all of our relationships. My friend will grieve, but she will never have to do it alone.