Thursday, July 30, 2009

a statement re: death, funerals, attire

A few months ago I bought a black dress with a modest, funeral-appropriate neckline, knowing that I would need it and that when the time came I probably wouldn't feel like shopping. And yes, I have needed it, along with the modest, funeral-appropriate blouse ("blouse," eww) I also bought when I realized that these things sometimes involve visitations the night before. And on Tuesday I will need it again, and woe is me, whine whine whine, I guess the events themselves should help me keep things in perspective in regard to my depression about having attended so many.

I was thinking the other day about all the sad/lovely things that accompany losing someone and making peace with that. Wearing of their jewelry. Having dreams in which you're talking to them, and they're well and lucid and calm. Waking up and feeling comforted despite the lump in your throat.

At my grandma's service in California last weekend (a non-traditional affair, delayed to allow people to make travel plans), my aunt brought this goofy headband with pinwheels on springs, which she then made someone wear when she had a hard time getting through her speech. And it helped. Sad and lovely.

Everyone is in agreement that hospice is wonderful, or mostly wonderful, until the waiting drives you crazy and you just want it to be over, except you don't really want it to be over. But these places have well-appointed libraries. And, if you're lucky, a slide-top freezer with an excellent selection of ice cream novelties. If you weren't there for the reason you were there, it would be an awesome place to hang out.

In the past I have made attempts to rehabilitate clothing that has become associated with bad things; e.g. "This is the sweater I was wearing when I got dumped, and I'm going to wear it to the party on Friday because I'll have fun there, and then this sweater will no longer only remind me of getting dumped." But I think the funeral dress will always remain the funeral dress. It's not like I have many other occasions in my life that call for a dress that dull, which is a good thing I suppose.

But the funeral dress is short-sleeved, so nobody fucking die in winter, okay? Or at all, for that matter. Everyone eat veggies and quit smoking, seriously, thanks. I'm getting a little too practiced at all of this.