The funeral

14th April 2011

We arrived at Chris and Peter’s at 4.30 pm so we hadn’t done badly on traveling time as we had left at about 11.30 am.  It good to be out of the car and to eat a hot meal.  I felt a bit sick later but I put that down to stress.  It had seemed like a long week and not sleeping very well hadn’t helped either.

We got to my dad’s house about 9.30 am Monday morning.  My aunt let us in as my dad was getting ready.  It got a bit stilted at one point as she mentioned that nobody had known how to get hold of us for years.  We piped up that mum and dad had known where we were and it was my sister who had rung me to let me know mum had died.  She remembered then that she had been present when the phone call had been made. Just before we left I made a point of hugging my sister and saying that we started talking to each other again.  She replied that too much water had gone under the bridge and bridges would have to be rebuilt so it would take time.  I looked her straight in the eyes and agreed with her.  Even though I have forgiven my sister she also needs to understand that she needs to build bridges with me.  It can’t be all one way.

I was a bit shocked to see how much weight my dad has lost and he seemed much smaller than I remember.  We hugged and it was so good to have that as my dad used to hug me like that.  It was hard watching my dad potter around whilst talking as he seemed so lost.

The funeral went well considering with the bible readings and sermon being spot on.  I held back the tears until we filed out.  The vicar put his arm round and I let him know who I was.  He was so kind and his words were comforting.   He wouldn’t let me go until I stopped crying.  I needed to get the tears out as it was the first time I had allowed to cry properly.

The wake was at my sister’s house.  I got to talk with my dad again and we talked without interruptions.  My brother in law was quite chatty as well which surprised me. I even got to hold my first great niece from my side of the family.  Nobody had bothered to let me know about her but I had a good idea my niece had had a baby.  The only upset I had was when my niece asked me to take my blog down whilst I was writing down my email address for my uncle and address for another relation.  Her reason was that it was hurtful and my aunt seconded it.  I just gritted my teeth and Rick asked a couple of times ‘what blog?’ but nobody would answer him.  We walked away and agreed that it was a good time to leave as we had a long journey home.   We said our goodbyes and I made a point of hugging my dad again before leaving.

I was very upset so had another good cry.  It seems like my family, particularly my sister, will never let go of the past or forgive me for my mistakes.  I have to remain strong and not let them get to me.  I felt like I couldn’t find the strength to keep in touch with my dad but then my family would be winning again.  Too much time has been lost nor did I get a chance to see my mum one last time.  It hurts so much that I couldn’t have one last conversation with her.  This was my sister being an obstacle again.  I had actually fallen out with her in 1999 and was angry with my parents for taking her side as usual.  When I finally got back in touch with parents in late 2001 I felt I couldn’t physically see them because my sister hated me so much.  I have had to learn to forgive myself for not having the courage to stand up to her and forgive her for making it so obvious she hated me.  I am going to have to come to terms that I couldn’t see my mum one more time or tell her to her face that I loved her.

Goodnight mum, God Bless and we will meet again one day.

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About Philippa

I am married to Rick and we live in a small town in County Durham. We have two dogs, a cat and two budgies. I am also an adoption survivor. In 1981 my son was born and I was then forced to surrender him. It took 23 years and reunion for my to find out that my son's adoption was legally known as a forced adoption and illegal but social workers got away with it because mothers didn't know their rights.
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