And Refuse To Attend Them....

When I was 17, I was pregnant with my first child.  It was the seventies , and I knew people expected me to hide away, but , ever the rebel, I went wherever I wanted to.  I attended four different high schools, due to the fact that my dad was in military service, and so made friends very slowly and cautiously.  I had befriended a boy in my then high school, and we had a tenuous, but growing friendship.  We weren't close, but spoke every day, and counted each other as friends.  He was  a jovial person, always quick with a smile and a good word for everyone He was very easy to like, and I always looked forward to seeing him in the hallways or at lunch.  Most of my "friends" deserted me during my pregnancy...my reputation having taken a heavy blow.  But K. never said a word about it ...he was just my friend.

It was my junior year , and upon arriving at school one morning found, to my horror, that unbeknownst to myself (and everyone else, apparently) my friend had been unhappy enough to commit suicide.  He had taped up all the windows and doors of his apartment, and run a hose from the motorcycle he had been so proud of, and axphyxiated himself.  This was not the rash act of a frenzied mind, but required much thought and planning..as well as the time consuming actions of taping the entrances and running the hose.  I was inconsolable, and wanted to attend the funeral to pay my respects, and say goodbye to my friend .  Up until then, I had attended a couple of funerals, but only a couple...my parents had never made it a requirement , unless it was the funeral of a close relative.  My experience was limited, but I never even considered how deeply his funeral would affect me. 

I drove myself to the Catholic church where his service was to take place...planning to say goodbye, and and then be on my way back home.  I sat through the entire sevice, then attended the graveside ritual of actually lowering him into the gaping hole made expressly for this purpose.  All during both segments of the service, I found myself sliding ever more deeply into dispair, but was unable to simply rise and leave.  It had taken a great deal of courage for me to attend the service, and I thought it extremely disrespectful to walk out on his final goodbye.  By the time it was over, I had become inconsolable.  The question of why..why my seemingly happy friend had not reached out, but had simply chosen to give up coupled with the fluctuating hormones my pregnancy caused...had been too much for my young soul.   I unsuccessfully fought the tears and bawled thoughout the long drive back home... a distance of some twenty miles.  I continued to grieve heavily that entire day, and sporadically for the next week.  I kept seeing his body lying in that coffin...and the hopelessness he must have felt stuck with me.  I swore to myself that I would never attend another funeral....Never!!!  I have broken my promise to myself only once....when my hubby's father died  a  few years after our marriage, and will probably attend the funerals of my parents when they pass....events that will surely be horrific...other than that , I have never attended any others, and never will. 

 

lonesurvivor lonesurvivor
56-60, F
Mar 10, 2010