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Something I hope to never do

Thursday, April 05, 2012

#6 in my self awareness blog questions is something in life I hope I never have to do.

The thing I hope I never have to do is tell Bob something has happened to one of his children. I can't magine how that would make him feel other than anguish and I would never want to be the one to deliver such news.

Twice in my life I have had to tell someone about a death and that hurt so much. One was my ex. I had to tell him his father died. The other was my sister-in-law. I told her that our mother had died so she could tell my brother in person - I didn't want him to hear it on the phone like I did when he called me to tell me our father had died. This was on my 30th birthday. I was having a party within the hour and it was too late to call it off.

It was a good thing I had the party. It really helped me a lot. Several of my coworkers took care of the kitchen and phone calls and took messages. Then a good friend came to relieve them. By this time friends started arriving with food. Jeannie started a book and wrote who brought what and their container. Then another co-worker came to spend the rest of the night with me so I wouldn't be alone. At 8AM, another co-worker arrived to help out. She continued the book entries Jeannie had started. She kept the coffee pot going for some of the family that had arrived and did dishes. When my mother arrived home that day, she was able to visit with visitors, but not have to worry about anything else. Fortunately not many came around other than his brothers and sisters. My brother and his family stayed with his in-laws, and he came to the house in late afternoon and stayed a long while.

The next day he and mother went to the funeral home to finalize the plans she had already told them from my brother's home the morning before. They knew that he had a large family, but that he retired two years before. They used the largest room for the calling hours and the service.

We were stunned! Usually if someone comes to calling hours they didn't come for the service. It seemed everyone came to the service! All of the room was filled and they had to open it up to the hall and into the second room to accomidate everyone! My father had been the head of the township road department and many of his crew was there. My mother had been a teacher and lots of those she taught with were there. I was working at the PD so all the dispatchers other than the one on duty and most of the off duty officers and auxillary members were there. There were also representatives from other area departments. Daddy had also been a deputy sheriff and the sheriff had ridden with him a lot and he had taught that youngster a lot about police work. So the sheriff and a number of deputies were there, too.

The guys from my department performed a ritual before the casket was moved, plus each of the uniformed officers and deputies approached the casket and saluted. It was quite impressive although sad, too. The funeral director told us that this was the most they ever accomidated.

Everyone went to the cemetery. Our department officers accompanied the limo with the casket and the family cars. The deputies handled traffic and stopping in areas and roads that needed to be closed. When I looked back I couldn't believe how many cars there were!!! The area around the little chapel at the cemetery was full for several blocks. The whole thing was amazing.

But, I would still hate to have Bob hear any bad news over the phone and I would hope I never have to deliver such a message. As I mentioned, having no children of my own, I can't begin to imagine how it would feel like to be a parent and receive that kind of news. I just know I would hate to see Bob feel helpless and hurting.

Love and peace to all my friends.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    These are painful times, losing loved ones. Over the phone is never the best way, but sometimes the only way to communicate this kind of news. My hardest was telling my teenage son his best friend committed suicide. I was able to tell him in person, but honestly there is NO comfortable way to give people the sad news of the loss of family or friend. It is painful news no matter how it is delivered.

    I'm glad you dad got such a great send off.

    2140 days ago
    Fortunately, we have a God who will never give us more on our plate than we are capable of handling. (Note to self: Remember this!) He will give you strength with whatever your needs are.
    2140 days ago
    I had to call my mother to tell her that my sis had passed away unexpectedly. Mom was in Europe with her brother attending a family wedding and a well deserved vacation. My sister was handicapped and my mom didn't want to take the trip but, we encouraged her to go. It felt so bad to hear the anguish in her voice and I couldn't be there to comfort her in person.
    2145 days ago
    That was a lovely send off for your father. Thank you for sharing his story.

    When the call came from the hospital to say my father had died (at the age of 48), I was the one who answered the call because none of the adults (my Mum and grandparents) wanted to go to the phone. But I had to get Mum to come to the phone, even though she didn't want to. I hated having to say that to her, but of course they asked for her and certainly weren't going to tell me the news (and of course I wasn't next of kin). It was a terrible shock - my mother was only 36 and I has just turned 14, while my brother was 10. Those sorts of events are ones we never forget...


    Hugs and blessings, Nattacia
    2145 days ago
    WOW your father had some send off... what a great thing to know how loved he, your mom and you are!

    Working in a hospital sometimes I need to assist on overseas calls so when that happens it breaks my heart especially when it is a child who was killed, but we do what we need to in life whether we like it or not. These things make us stronger.
    2145 days ago
    It's always hard to lose someone we care about. It's also never easy to give bad news. Yet loss is a part of life so while we try to minimalize the bad times, it is those times that help us appreciate the good times.
    2145 days ago
    So sorry you had to experience that ... I too hope I never have to do that !!
    but if I do, I will do my best ...
    Hugs and Love Susie emoticon
    2145 days ago
    Ev, delivering life changing news is never easy, and as much as you will not like being the one to deliver such news... take assurance that your kind, gentle spirit will help ease the shock & pain! emoticon
    2145 days ago
    Those kind of phone calls are never easy to get to deliver. You must have been very proud of your father.
    2145 days ago
    I remember about 10 yrs. ago when our eldest and her companion were in an auto accident. Her compaign was killed right out.
    Our daughter did survive with a broken back. Ever since she has been confined to a wheelchair.

    2145 days ago
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