Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Viewing

I sat on the front pew with my Dad and brothers and sister in the church, Boo was at home being looked after by a couple of my friends. I could hear the whispers behind me as my mothers family and friends arrived to visit her for the last time.
The most beautiful casket I have ever seen was wheeled into the church, my sister in law chose it for her. Nothing but the best for our Mum.  The funeral people opened up the casket. My Dad started howling, he continues to speak with her asking why she left him. We all started to sob, there was no way of stopping the tears. When I saw her she looked yellow, it took a while for the eyes to adjust and only focus on her beautiful face. Once I stopped crying and cleared my eyes, I noticed she was not  wearing any make-up, not even lipstick. I got my sisters attention and told her that Mum would be horrified, she would never leave the house without lipstick. She agreed. She told the funeral people, she offered them her lipstick and they applied it to her respectfully. It was amazing how different she looked, now it was my Mum.

We had an opportunity to say our goodbyes. I got up and kissed her forehead many times, it was so cold, frozen cold. My Mum was always warm, with a huge warm heart. But I couldn't kiss her enough. I just wanted to hold her, I cried. My eldest brother put his arm around me to comfort me. She looked beautiful in her dress that she had chosen, her pearl earrings and matching necklace. She took with her her handbag, in it was her prayer book a new one so she could start fresh and her Rosary beads, and also an Italian deck of cards. She taught all the grandkids to play 31, she loved to win and often even cheated. She would pull out her jar full of five cent pieces so they had money to play with. So she had a five cent piece in her bag for every child and grandchild. I put a photo of Boo and I in her prayer book with a note written on the back. I want her to show Max. Anyone that wanted to give her something did, I saw my nephew give her one his music cd's. She was always there to support him and his music, even going to his Pub gigs, that's just the woman she was. She was proud.

As the chant of the Rosary was being said, I couldn't take my eyes off her. My beautiful mum. The Rosary was completed and we said our final farewell. I kissed her frozen forehead again and put my hand on her heart. Good bye Mum, I love you. The casket was closed.

After the Viewing the entire family went back to my Dad's house, it always used to be "Mum's house" even though they both lived there. If someone would ask where are you going, the response would be " To Mums" It's been a difficult habit to break. It was the first time back to the house for me and many of the others. There were lots of tears and first sitings of some of my Mum's possessions were hard to take. The hardest for me was seeing her chair empty. Where she would sit and crochet or knit. It was her chair and she was there not that long ago doing this......

She will no longer sit in this chair, ever.

My Dad has been a real mess, but it's expected. I remember that all too well, going back home after Max died and finding his things everywhere, he was everywhere, just like my Mum is everywhere.
I miss my Mum x


Leah - Bogue Living said...

Oh Vee :( Lots of tears falling for you and your Mum.

Glowless @ Where's My Glow said...

I love that she has her purse, and all it's treasures, with her.
My grandfather died a few weeks ago, and it's nothing like losing a parent, so I don't want it to sound like I'm comparing, but seeing his chair empty, really tore at me. The cat won't even sit there now without his lap to snuggle in.

Anonymous said...

So so sad for you and your family Vee. Sending you love,
Leez xx

Kim from FL said...

Tears falling reading your post. I too love tht she has her purse and all the wonderful things in it. I'm so sorry.

Anonymous said...

Oh Vee, tears are falling down my face.. so sad Vee.. I'm so sad for you and your family. Your poor Dad. God Bless him and give him strength.. Give all of you strength.. during this excruciatingly difficult time.


BigP's Heather said...

I'm so sorry.
Wish I had the right words to say, to express how sorry I am and how my heart aches for you now. I'm thinking of you and sending love.

Serenity said...

My throat is aching with tears, too.

Sending you so much love from across the world, Vee. I hope you can feel it.


Peg said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I hope you and your family find peace soon. This loss must also bring up memories with Max. Again, I am so sorry. Hang in there.

Delenn said...

Oh Vee. What a send off she had. Such a loss. I wish I could wish it away for you and your family.

Cibele said...

crying with you. So heartbreaking . I am so sorry

maytey said...

Tears over here too. But I LOVE the handbag and all its magical contents. Can't imagine how hard it must be for your dad, and for you. Big hugs, my friend. xxx

stink-bomb said...

you know 3 years down the track, i still haven't gotten over losing my dad, in fact i don't believe it's even sunk in yet. it's the little things, like your mums chair and knowing she will never sit in it again.

sending love as always Vee


Kristin said...

Oh Vee, crying for you now. It sounds so much like my father-in-law's viewing right down to people slipping things into the casket to go with him.

Praying for you and your family.

Melissa said...

Oh, this is heartbreaking. My mother was adamant she didn't want a viewing of her, and I confess, I'm relieved. I don't know that I could have done it. I don't know that I could have done that extra goodbye.

My thoughts, still remain with you and your family, especially your poor Dad. I don't know why, but I hadn't realised he was still with you. How heartbreaking for him.

I remember so clearly, staring at Mum's chair. Walking past it for weeks, noone being able to sit in it.