Triggers, the little buggers, they can come at you out of no where. Ambush. You think you’re fine, great and next thing you know you’re not.
I got asked to help with a funeral, a very high profile funeral 2 days ago. No big deal, I manage things for a living, generally not dead things, but the same principals apply. I didn’t think I’d have an issue with working on a funeral, till I had an issue working on a funeral.
I started getting mad, very mad. BPD come up from within and consume you emotion. Listening to the details needed for this funeral caused the slow burn to start. Budget was not an issue, thousands and thousands of dollars in flowers, catering, flying world renowned entertainers in to perform, all these things were just so important… colours, napkins, music… meetings hours after the person was deceased to work all the details out. The vulgarity of it made me sick to my stomach. Sick that death had become a spectacle.
Sick to my stomach at the 3-ring circus this death was. Have you ever been to a funeral, is any family member actually happy to be there? To talk to people? Every funeral i have been to the widow is distraught, beyond sad, barely able to speak yet he/she has to be there, has to be there because he/she has guests to see and entertain. There to watch his or her public sorrow. Are the kids ever happy to be there? Their parent has just died and they need to smile and entertain relatives and guests. Who is this for? Does anyone want to eat and drink? Does the open bar draw a crowd?? Shall we take selfies to say we were at THE funeral? Hashtag #bestfuneralever
The decor, the food and the entertainment, do you come to a funeral for good food and entertainment? Isn’t it crass that someone you loved has just died and you’re more worried about what people will think about your funeral arrangements than spending time with your family in mourning? Who cares what people think, if they think badly of your funeral then obviously they shouldn’t be classified as a friend. There’s a reason people bring you food when someone dies, it’s because you shouldn’t be thinking of cooking and cleaning and entertaining, they’re not important, love, feelings, family, that’s what’s important. It’s so pompous that even in the death of a loved one people are still more worried about perception. That they are so important that appearance and vanity supersedes being human.
My black and white BPD came out in full force and I could not think positively about anyone involved in the funeral. So much so, I had to bow out because the judgemental side of me could not be put down and I knew I would come away vilifying people I work with on a day to day basis for their decision to work on this funeral. Everyone has a right to make their own decisions, and I realized this, which made me realize I had to walk away and shut this out or I would destroy and walk away from relationships as a consequence.
I walked away, shut down for the last 2 days and I’ve been in a churning hole. I am so disgusted at the materialism and showmanship. The fact that this funeral has become a production, a production, like we’re putting on a gala dinner and show. The thoughts and images keep turning and turning in my mind. I can’t sleep, my mind wants to tear apart the people involved in the funeral, to make them bad to fit my judgements. It’s trying and exhausting winding the emotions and feelings down, finding the middle ground, taming the judgement and making sure I stay mum and do not engage.
They say, memories and experiences in your past create situations in the present where a seemingly innocuous event can cause a blown out of proportion reaction. When my father died, my extended family was very involved in “helping me” wih the funeral arrangements. So much of what you “should do”, I shouldn’t have to do anything, this is my father and the only thing I should do is be with my family and mourn my father. But the should do’s continued, i should pick the right casket (he’s dead and getting cremated) and spend my time looking at upgraded and premium versions of wood and lining. He just died yesterday who cares about the wood? We should get flowers and wreaths, who the fuck cares? My guests? Are they going to judge me for not having flowers on my dead father’s casket? He’s dead, he doesn’t care, he’s the most important perons here. We should get on the phone and call everyone and send invites even though my heart just cracked and broke. We should invite every person who has ever come into contact with my father, really? Why? So in addition to mourning I can smile at strangers, find the right words to say and wish like hell this was over and then pull out a cheque book to pay for all the people who felt they should be here because i felt I should invite them. Is there anyone that actually wants to go to a funeral? If they loved my father, saying good bye is not a public spectacle, it’s done inwardly, towards the heaven, the soul, whichever faith you believe in. It is most definitely not at a party with good food and entertainment with 600 of your closest friends. The straw that broke my back was my aunt wanting to film the funeral. Can we get some reality here, this is sorrow, a way to say good bye, not a movie I plan on re-watching every year.
Yes, I’m scarred, funerals are not a show, death is not a show. I’ve seen death, people close to to me have died. Maybe you need to see death that close to understand what loss is and how private it is. That celebrating pain is not a celebration. Misery is not a party unless you’re a narcissist.
That these people and their lackeys are so self important, that their china pattern, canapés, entertainment and napkins mean more than finding the space and time to mourn their loved one privately with class and decorum.
This is all opinion and judgement, I am well aware of this, hence, I have nothing to do this funeral or anyone involved with it. Walk away. If something bothers you, it is my prerogative to walk away. I walked.