Today I attended the funeral of an 18 year old boy. When we arrived at the church, we found the last available spot and sat down. We were just feet away from the casket where the family was gathered, saying their final good-byes…one last moment to look at his face, to touch his fingers, to kiss his forehead, to try and memorize every curve, smile line and imperfection on his beautiful face… one last moment to look at their son and brother… I tried not to look at them, the moment so deeply personal and intimate, but I couldn't help but steal a glance. I listened to the mother's sobs and could almost feel her pain radiating off of her. As they walked away, the father gently pulling his wife hand, I watched her as she kept turning around looking, trying with all her might to get one final glimpse of the beautiful child she had brought into this world. Just another peek… It was heart wrenching to watch.
I could not help but remember our final good bye to Declan… when our funeral director told us it was time to say our final good-byes, I remember thinking, 'NO, not yet. I don't want to say my "final" good-bye. It's too soon.' I remember trying to take in as much as I could as I stood over his casket… trying so desperately to burn his image into my brain. I remember holding Nate's hand, the two of us simply staring at our son… Our funeral director told us to take all the time we wanted, but forever wasn't an option and how do you say, "ok, thats enough." I am not sure how we decided to walk away, but it was so very difficult and unreal… and what I wouldn't give for one last glimpse, one last chance to run my finger across his chubby little fingers.