Life is settling back into a somewhat normal rhythm.
Of course in our world normal is never for long. I am not sure if there is a sticky note on our backs that says "drama!! give us drama," but if there is, would someone please remove it? We prefer peace and easy going. But until then . . .
The visitation for Pat was Wednesday evening and the funeral on Thursday, his birthday.
There were many tears and a some laughter too. From one of his previous marriages, he has a daughter. She is in her 20's and has down syndrome and is the sweetest, sharpest, spit fire. Her mom had decided not tell her about her father's death until the day of visitation. Her half- brother and his wife had just delivered their first born and she was so excited and having so much fun with that new joy, that her mom did not wish to dampen the elation before she had too. She also tends to get so fixated on something, her mother thought it might be best to wait. It was gut wrenching to say the least. That raw emotion was overwhelming. But Thursday she was somewhat better. He had written a "just in case he didn't make it" letter that was read at the funeral. He mentioned her in it and her name was mentioned a few times during the funeral which put the biggest smile on her face.
Pat was a walking tall tale in someways. He always had the best stories and at times you really weren't sure where the truths ended and the embellishments began.
Displayed at the visitation was a plaque he received while working in Afghanastan/Irag. While traveling from one location to another, the group was ambushed. As the soldiers tried to leave the vehicles to gather the wounded soldiers, Pat grabbed a weapon (sorry, I don't remember what kind of gun) and opened fire on the enemy to cover for them. Now that would have been one of those stories one might have wondered about, but there it was, in all honesty in an award presented to him from the unit.
Fun stories were shared, but funnier was when we looked around and noticed some of us in attendance. As I shared the other day, Will remained friends with his brother-in-law Bobby (Pat's brother) as well as Pat and their mother. Their motto in the divorce was a sibling might get a divorce, but that does not mean the family divorces them too. Let by gones be by gones, and that was so apparent
As we looked around, we sorta counted. Pat's wife was there, naturally, and so were two of his ex wives. His sister J, had in attendance her current husband and an ex husband. N, Will's ex wife, had in attendance her current husband, Will, and another ex. Don't get me wrong, marriage is important and Will and I truly believe in the importance of a sound marriage, but it was rather entertaining seeing all the exs!
A relative, from another state, mentioned, at the dinner after the funeral, how weird that all the "out"laws still get along with the family and are so welcome.
It might not be entirely normal, and it might seem somewhat weird because it is so unusual, but it makes me smile to see the forgiveness and warmth and love that continued among the family. Divorce issues removed and down to the basic character of us all, aren't we suppose to do that in life? Love one another? Have compassion for those around us? The variables a little untraditional, but the love and friendship was heartfelt.