Family Death Overseas

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LaudJohn
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by LaudJohn » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:10 pm

Stay where you are.

It does not matter where you mourn or say your good byes.

Mourn in your own way and have your own ceremony and deliver your own eulogy.

You do not need to do this at a particular place.

You were not close in the last decade.

If it was anyone else that you had communicated with so sparsely would you put yourself in financial distress to be seen by a few to be doing the right thing?

Your mother is dead, if there is an afterlife she will hear you no matter where you are.

I only hope you have no regrets about the relationship, but nothing you can do now can repair it.
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General Mackevili
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by General Mackevili » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:44 pm

Very sorry for your loss, RD.

Many of my thoughts have already been expressed already, so no reason to reiterate those.

Funerals are for the living, not the dead.

Besides it being a very personal choice, if your decision to go or not is based on others, I agree it should be your sisters that you think about.

One of my very best friend's father died while I was out traveling. She didn't tell me Abbott it until after the funeral because she didn't want me to have to come back. Very considerate of her.

If you think it's something you'll regret, and can afford it now, I'd say go.

I don't blame you at all if you don't, but regret is something that can creep upon you out of nowhere.

Just reading this thread has brought back random memories I haven't thought of in almost 2 decades. In my life I've gone to funerals of random friends that have passed away, and I've been overwhelmed by how much it meant to family members of the deceased that I went there and gave my condolences. I've had parents/friends of my deceased friends tell me years later how glad their were I came, often teary eyed in public.

So I know funerals mean the world to the living sometimes.

I also know that even though you spoke only a handful of times over the last few years, the death of a parent can really hit hard out of the blue. Regret would be a terrible feeling to throw in the mix.

Also, as for your mother's wishes, if it's truly a hardship for you to get over there, I'm sure she wouldn't wanted to have caused you such grief.

Either way you decide, it's your personal choice and you shouldn't regret whichever way you decide to go.

You and the fam are in my thoughts.
"Life is too important to take seriously."

"Life does not cease to be funny when people die any more than it ceases to be serious when people laugh."

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flying chicken
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by flying chicken » Thu Jul 17, 2014 12:37 am

Sorry to hear about that Rain Dog. I am no way in a position giving you advice on this matter. But I would like to share an anecdote about my family as a refugee; my mother who risked her life and limb so my older sister can immigrate to America and my uncle to Australia to live and have a better life; when my mother passed away since I was an adolescence (the doctor couldn't figure what the cause of her death was even after the autopsy, and concluded the cause of her death was probably a heart attack). My sister was too busy back in Boston with work so she could not come to her own mother's funeral whom she has not seen for nearly 20 years. I don't know what my deceased mother feels. But as I grew older I started to hate her more than anything in the world.
EVERYONE BOW DOWN AND PAY EXTREME HOMAGE TO HIS MAJESTIES flying chicken©
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by Anchor Moy » Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:04 am

Hi RD;
Not much to add - you have to do what's right for you. Talk to your sister - get on skype or something and talk it out with her. She may be saying that everything's fine, but maybe she would really like to see you, and maybe you would like to reconnect with her and her family too?
There's always a sense of urgency when someone passes away, but going all that way to the ceremony should be something that counts for you and the people that you love; don't do it because you feel that it is the expected thing to do.
All the best.
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Bitte_Kein_Lexus
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by Bitte_Kein_Lexus » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:10 am

Have you decided what to do yet RD?
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by Rain Dog » Fri Jul 18, 2014 5:52 pm

Thank you to all who replied. I thought every reply was dignified and helpful, even with the differing points of view; and I appreciate that some took the time to share their own stories as well.

I have had a busy few days seemingly non-stop on the phone with my sister, who has had a much more hectic time sorting things out, collecting belongings and trying to piece together last days and final wishes.

Ultimately I have decided on a compromise solution. I will not be rushing back.

1) My Sister seems to just want get this behind her and grieve later.

2) Mom had left instructions with the funeral home that she wanted no funeral service or calling hours; only a simple prayer read at burial.

That said It does not sit well with me to just ignore it, so I am trying to promise myself that I will go back in 3 or 4 months, spend some time with sister and her now grown kids and find some way to pay my respects on my timing and in my way rather than jumping though hoops to attend a 10 minute ritual that means nothing to me, her, or any of the 4 or 5 people who will attend. I do not think I will regret this approach too much. It's been 11 years since I have been back and there are probably a lot of things I need to face up to. I would rather do it in a prepared way.

Both Giblet and Stroppy mentioned how unique it is t lose some one who has been estranged for so long. This is very true. There is no loss at all in terms of my day to day life, but there is a finality in death that makes things seem very clear. As much as we lie to ourselves about how "someday" "things will get sorted" dealing with the ultimate reality that they won't "get sorted" is a sobering experience.

Food for thought for any of you that might have a similar issue with someone in your family.

Thanks again for all for the kind words and advice.

Cheers,

RD
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General Mackevili
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by General Mackevili » Fri Jul 18, 2014 6:07 pm

Rain Dog wrote:
I do not think I will regret this approach too much.
Agreed. Well thought out plan.

Good luck with it all!
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vladimir
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by vladimir » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:15 pm

Hey RD, I just saw this now, condolences.

Fwiw, when my mother was dying she told me to be happy, she should be crying for me.

I asked her what she meant.

She told me that I was the one staying in this horrible world, not her.

Hope this helps a little bit.
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StroppyChops
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by StroppyChops » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:21 pm

All the very best, RD. Would you like a few of us to get together for a couple of quiet drinks on the appropriate day? No words to be said, just some company?
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ExPenhMan
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Re: Family Death Overseas

Post by ExPenhMan » Fri Jul 18, 2014 8:26 pm

I would recommend keeping in touch with your sister and be ready to join her at a day's notice should the post-funeral complications mount or family issues arise. I'm only guessing here but maybe your sister needs support for the foregoing reasons or others that may crop up.

Good decision, it seems to me.
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