Monday, February 13, 2012

Intriguing Obituaries

Browsing through the obituaries in the paper this morning.  Something I have done for years.  True to that Scorpio trait of being intrigued by death.  Noting the words chosen when condensing a life into a few sentences.  Reading between the lines.  Observing which aspects of a person's lifetime are included and considering those which might purposefully be omitted.  Paying attention to their ages.  A few living mere hours, some over one hundred years.  Most falling somewhere in-between.  Wondering about those indicating no service by request. Recognizing that the majority of obituaries are written by loved ones, a number by care facilities, and on occasion, by the individual themselves.  An exercise my son had undertaken less than a year before he died.  Unbeknownst to his family.  To facilitate gaining clarity for himself.  Sealing it in an envelope.  One of his sisters discovering it within days of his passing.  His father reading it aloud at his funeral. Imparting a clear sense of what was in Michael's heart and what he aspired to be remembered for.  Ending with, "You will be greatly missed!"  Indeed, he certainly is.

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