Author Topic: wow, people were really helpful...  (Read 986 times)


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wow, people were really helpful...
« on: June 22, 2015, 10:50:13 AM »
A childhood friend of mine buried his father on Father's Day. Sadly, I didn't answer his call when he was driving up from the city his lives in to get in my city in time to witness his father's last moments. that five hour drive must have been painful...

I jumped into action: this is a Jewish family, we bury our dead very rapidly and there are rules for the mourners to follow in the first week of their grief. To help them. So I took responsibility for the mourners meals, starting with a call with a caterer on Sunday morning. Then I fielded all the emails from the many friends and family who wanted to help by providing a meal for this week. I tried to organise something to let everyone contribute, but we're still pretty young, so no one had a lot of experience in how to deal with these things. No one, except that very friend and a few others who of course took over when we buried my DH. In addition, we need every evening for ten men to show up at the mourners' house to say prayers at 7:10PM. Women aren't included in the count (don't get me started), and they have few friends and family in this city, so every night will be a struggle to get to ten. Facebook posts and phone calls were made. Ultimately, you can literally knock on people's doors in the condo building and get people in their slippers to show up. I've seen that done often, and really it's a good deed to help mourners, so you're doing the neighbours a favour by letting them participate. You can also more simply go to synagogue to do the prayers, there's always ten guys there, that's what I did. But it's a stress on mourners and it's our responsibility to help them.

Regardless of the intricacies of the system under which we operate, I am amazed at how much work it is, in extremely short notice, to organise a Jewish funeral. All plans for Sunday were out the window, I had to locate a babysitter for my daughters to spend the day with , lots of calls between friends, caterers, emails, follow-ups. I was exhausted and I hardly knew the deceased.

My friend told me he had a new appreciation for what I went through when it was me burying my loved one. I now have a new appreciation for the work that he and others did when they organised everything so I could focus on mourning. I thanked them all profusely at the time, and I would love to thank them again. It's also weird to me that I can go to the new widow (who isn't at all young, she's in her 80s) and I could tell her of my experience. She and I now share a very deep bond. I find that inherently extremely strange.


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Re: wow, people were really helpful...
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2015, 06:06:26 PM »
You did a wonderful thing, for your childhood friend. It does seem, rather there is just a simple ceremony or an intricate one, the aftermath of death is so much work. Good for you, that you were there to help out and to do what you could.

What you said about the bond with the widow. I think we can all understand that one. I know, when I met my New Guy, I felt that instant connection, too.
"The highest tribute to the dead is not grief but gratitude." - Thornton Wilder

Thank you, my dearest Kenneth, for loving me and for giving me the best 13 years of my life.


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Re: wow, people were really helpful...
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2015, 07:29:50 PM »
You were a blessing. Good for you.  Niw putbyour feet up a while. You deserve it.
"All the waves must reach the shore before the water calms"-Ray ♡