than to cringe… Recently, our friend just returned from Georgia, where his sister had unexpectedly passed away. They were all saddened and shocked by her sudden death, but found sweet pockets of joy reminiscing and one laugh-until-you-cry moment.
His sister’s husband got a call from the funeral home and they asked him to bring up some clothes for her to be dressed in. Knowing everyone in the small southern town would be there, they reluctantly knew they had to have an open casket for all to say their goodbyes. Even as they drove down the street in the funeral procession the road workers stopped to pay their tribute. That’s southern for the deepest kind of respect that you might not see anywhere else.
So, her husband went to her closet and wanted to pick out something really nice, something that he remembered her looking good in, and something that he knew she’d want others to see her in as their last memory of her. After sorting through her closet, he found a great dress that he had remembered her wearing recently that did make her look so beautiful. So he gathered everything together and dropped it all off at the funeral home.
Right before the visitation started, he thought he’d see if his kids wanted some time to say their good-byes to their mother, so they all went in and saw her. His daughter immediately panicked, “DAD, where did you find that dress?” He said he’d seen it on her recently, and he thought it would look lovely on her. His daughter said, “That’s not her dress.” Turned out it was her best friend’s. And there wasn’t a thing they could do about it, except pull her friend aside and warn her.
Hysterical!!! I hate viewing personally, and think it morbid. Remember me vivacious and alive doing the things I love best, not pasty faced in a coffin! Glad someone understands! Thanks for the story–it would be a great book!
ahhh – maybe you should write a book on funerals in the south – my great aunt died and i went home to go to the funeral with the Steel Magnolia. Well, we just had to go by the funeral home for the bizarre custom of “viewing” before the service. No one was there – just us. We went in, walked over beside the casket – my mom begins crying, and telling me how awful my Aunt Emmie looks – that she doesn’t even look like herself after so much suffering and illness. After a few minutes of crying, wailing and snorting – a funeral director came in and gently asked my mom if she was a relative of the woman in the casket – who just happened NOT to be my Aunt Emmie!!! We were shown into another room, and began this whole process over again!!! Do I believe in this bizarre custom of “viewing”? Don’t think so!! Kathy
Nothing like some loving humor to break the sorrow of the moment. Quite a memorable thing they will laugh about when they remember her.