Thursday, August 2, 2012

PostHeaderIcon Cara: Word(s) of the week...

Empathy; noun
1. the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. (there were more definitions but too abstract; they made my hair hurt)
Empathy is something I try to teach my children, amongst 90 million other things. I usually use whatever situation we happen to be in to make them look at things from another's perspective. I think it's a good tool for anyone to have. Sometimes it makes you take a step back and see things in a better light. Although we try to teach our kids lessons, it's when we actually see them in action, is when we finally know we weren't actually talking to the wall all those times.
We recently had a sudden death in the family. Not exactly our family but my sister-in-law's family. And when you have been married "to" a family for over 20 years...well everyone's family. We had to attend the wake for my sister in law's father. Although almost 90, he was spry, healthy and seemed like he was 70 not 90. So it was shocking for everyone to learn he had passed. My Mike was feeling a little weird as we were getting ready for the wake (uh-oh weird usually means a melt down or deep conversation right before bed that sucks the life outta me). He ended up running around downstairs with tons of cousins in the funeral home as the wake went on upstairs, so he was fine.(I secretly envy the kids during the wake; they get to be kids and for a few hours and get to remove themselves from the sadness ).
Fast forward to the funeral mass and the kid was a mess. Now, I am no rock mind you. I hate that I can't keep it together at these things.  But he was so sad and could not stop crying. He tried (like hell) but the tears kept coming. I tried not to make a scene and let him be. After when we talked about it he said he didn't know what happened. He wasn't especially close to this man. He was his cousins' grandfather. He liked him. They shared a name, something they like to discuss when they would meet. He thought he was very nice. But he felt sad for his aunt, and his cousins. He said I think I was crying for them and how sad they felt. It was like he could feel their hearts, he said.  (I know he kills me sometimes)
And although I felt bad for the poor guy, I was proud of him. I was proud he knew and felt the importance of what was going on. He knew how sad he would feel if it was he who lost someone, and really felt for his cousins. So underneath that mohawk (it's days are numbered school is approaching) and 10 year old "muscle flexing" (another post entirely) there's a sensitive guy. I like that.
Another word of the week is respect. R-E-S-P-E-C-T...(cue Aretha). The fact that people were getting annoyed and cutting into the car funeral procession to the cemetery...was making steam come out the top of head!!! What the hell? Do people not understand what a line of cars with headlights and hazard lights on midday following a hearse and black limos mean????? Have some respect for the people in those cars. UGH!!!!! Thank goodness we had a bad ass funeral director with dark sunglasses that sped along the side of the procession, in a black Escalade with flashing police like lights, who would park across an intersection to allow us to pass, all the while telling people to wait and or shut up...loved it. I may have found my calling. I totally wanted to ride shotgun and give people lectures about funeral etiquette.
So heaven has another character angel. I am sad I won't have anyone to say "Welcome to Kings Park" (with a brogue) any more when I am up that way. But I am sure he heard "Welcome to heaven" last week.
            "Until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand"


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