We used to nickname her pumpkin when she was younger

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The viewings and Alysia's miracle workings from beyond.

My fear of the visitation day was all consuming. Alysia was "resting" as of early in the morning so the family could go see her first. I drove there by myself after I put up major barriers around my heart and mind. I "steeled" myself, I put myself in automatic pilot but underneath that shut down person, was a soul crying to God for help to get through this. My body drove the car dry eyed and strong, my soul screamed and cried and protested what I was about to do.

I walked in the funeral home, the smell of flowers overwhelming me. My body dragged my soul into the room and I could see her from a distance. Some part of me screamed internally. I made it 3/4 of the way and I had to sit down. I could just see her laying there and her floppy bear hanging over the edge of the casket. I cried while Tom held me. I eventually had to make my way to her. When I finally did, she looked like she was sleeping. The sight of floppy bear made me cry for so many of us left behind, but especially Josh at that moment.

In life she always had this little smirk on her face (when she wasn't pissed off). Like she always knew something we didn't. Somehow the funeral home captured that smirk without us ever mentioning that about her and only seeing one picture. It was ever so slight but it was there. I looked at her and said to her "You never wanted to grow up. I guess you got what you wanted. That's why you're smirking." That little smirk gave me strength to get through that day.

It took me a while to be able to actually touch my daughter in that casket. It went in stages, I touched her hair first, then her forehead and was struck by how smooth her skin was, and how cold she was. By the end of my morning visit I could kiss her forehead and hold her hands. Sometimes I thought I could see her smirk get bigger or her chest move as if she were breathing and my brain would say...Trish they took out her lungs, she is not breathing. She is dead." My brain had to be brutal to me.

At the scheduled viewings I was overwhelmed by the amount of people there. I didn't realize so many cared about our little family. I was so touched by everyone that was there. There were so many people that it seemed to be a social gathering at times. I would glance at Alysia and she was by herself, my heart breaking, I would have to go over to her and keep her company.

Two miracles though came of the viewings both of the same sort but different people. I had a childhood friend, she was practically my sister, my best friend ever, who I had lost contact with for over 23 years. She never left my heart. She was always my sister. Her family took care of me when I was young and her family always had a special place in my heart. Luckily one of the sisters in the family always kept semi contact with me. Alysia never met her but heard me talk about her so much. I believe Alysia entered both of our hearts and "softened" them to the point where my long lost friend came to the viewing. I was so happy to see her! My soul, my inner child leaped with joy! I knew Alysia had something to do with this. I thank her everyday for doing this.

Alysia used to joke about my "ex-friends"...she just found it funny that I had ex-friends for some reason. Don't most people? Another ex-friend of our family found out about Alysia's death through a set of completely weird circumstances that could not be explained... being delayed at a garage waiting for a part for his car, glancing down at a sprawled out newspaper that happened to be open to the obituaries and seeing Alysia's obituary! He knew he had to come to the viewings. His wife however was away at an unreachable place so she wasn't there. I knew that Alysia wanted him to be there, she always really liked him but knew that having his wife there wouldn't be good for me, at least not at this point in my life. I haven't heard from either of them since but that's ok. As I am learning to trust in the timing of things. Even in the timing of my only daughter's death at the age of 20.

My fear of having the image of Alysia in a casket overshadow all other memories and images of her were unfounded but very real to me at the time. Although I can remember her in the casket, I actually have to pull it out of my memory bank. My thoughts of her for the most part, are of when she was alive... laughing, playing WoW in her bedroom, burning her food because she was impatient and set the burner to "inferno"...etc.

1 comment:

  1. Trish:
    I can feel your pain, all I can give to you for consolation is to say Here are hugs headed your way


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