Thursday, November 15, 2012

The day before the funeral

My mom passed away on Sunday November 11th - just 13 days before my brother's wedding. I remember when my father passed away, it was very hard to accept. I was not there when he died, I just had to trust that he was gone. And on the day of the funeral, I didn't recognize him in the coffin. He did not look like the father I remembered. There was a closet near the bathroom in the funeral home and I recall thinking "he could be locked up in the closet, or somewhere else, he's not really gone."

With my mom, I don't have that thought. We spent time with her after she passed, feeling her soft, smooth skin for the last time, giving her one last kiss on the cheek, feeling her hand touch the side of my face. She laid there, lifeless, but at peace.

In a way, I dread tomorrow. I fear she will not resemble the mother I knew, the mother with the warm smile and soft skin. To be honest, I have not really processed everything. It's not as though I don't believe she's gone. I know it. She's not coming back. But with my brother's wedding and tying up odds and ends here and there, I have not mentally prepared myself for tomorrow. I have not even picked out what I will be wearing.

After this publishing this post, I will sign off and pick out the clothes for tomorrow. I will write a letter to my mom. In Chinese tradition, we burn paper money so that our loved one will be taken care of in the after life. In that same fashion, I will also burn the letter.

My mom has always said that even when she is gone, she will always watch over me. I hope I have enough strength to get through tomorrow.


  1. I'll be thinking of you tomorrow my friend. Even though I am not there physically, I will be thinking of you and your family and the journey.

    From personal experience with this, there's no way to really mentally prepare yourself for the day. It goes by like a blur. I use to think it would be a scary thing seeing someone you truly love just lying there in a coffin, but it's actually a release of emotion and a day filled with so much love. Once I viewed it as a celebration of a wonderful life and not focus on what I loss, it helped in the grand scheme of things. Not saying it's easy but it will be a loving and memorable day.

    You last few sentences made me cry. That's pretty much verbatim what my mom said to me a few months ago.

  2. "a release of emotion and a day filled with so much love"...thank you Lorita, I'll remember that tomorrow to give me strength.