There is something inherently beautiful in the events that follow the death of a loved one. The gathering of friends and family at the funeral home, while sad, is a testament to the to the love that spreads out among us. There were people at the funeral home who didn't actually know my aunt, but who came out of respect for my father, or my cousins, or my other aunts and uncles.
Today as we sat in the church for the funeral, I looked at my family, all gathered, arms around each other, comforting, whispering words of comfort, passing handkerchiefs to those in need and I felt such a sense of belonging and strength. This family was created by blood ties, but those ties were strengthened by countless Sundays around my grandparents dinner table. By trips to the creek and hay fights in the barn. By Sunday afternoon conversations in the living room, sneaking naps into the gaps in conversation. And I was so proud of this family. As a family we offered strength to those members of us who needed it most.
And there is something about the music. Those old fashioned hymns that take me back to my childhood....Sweet Beulah Land. Here I am, Lord. Those old songs promising rest. Going home. All day I've been singing a song in my head, an old hymn that was used in a scene in the movie Junebug. This song.
Today I drove the old roads. I could have driven them blindfolded, I think. I drove past my grandparents homeplace, the actual home no longer there, a fact I discovered only today. It felt like two deaths. But still. Those roads. Those people. Those songs. It was home.
5 years ago