Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Funerals and Reunions

I feel emotionally drained. The last few days have been such a mix of highs and lows. Having Janny and Tan Tan up for a few days has been wonderful. The kids have been in heaven with their Aunty and Grandma.
Tan Tan has constant trouble with her back and was in a bad way for Sat night, so we all had an early night. The plane ride was excruciating for her.
It was lovely to go down to the Gold coast on Sunday and Monday and spend some time with the bereaved family. Sunday was for family and closest friends. Monday was the funeral and wake. Reg was agnostic and as such the family had a celebrant conduct the service at home and then we all went to the crematorium for final farewells. It was a wonderful, peaceful day celebrating Reg's life.

I think the thing that affected me the most was seeing my brothers best friends and realising that they are men now. Nicholas will always be 18 years old. It was really hard to look at these smart, successful, handsome men and realise that I will never get to see my brother as an adult.
I thought that after all these years the grief was settling down to just a dull ache, but seeing the boys has reopened the wound and I feel so sad and melancholy. One of the worst moments was sitting in the crematorium and in front of me was the shoulders and heads of two of Nick's friends. It was such a powerful image that I had to take a photo.

As a surprise Robin had organised a dove for herself and each of the four children to be released at the end of the service. It was beautiful to see them let the birds go, and then watch as the birds circled around for a few minutes before flying home.

Here is Tan Tan and I with Robert (Nicholas best friend) between us, and Nicks other close friend Cameron on the left.
Robert spoke beautifully at his Fathers funeral, there is no trace of the teenager left. We all treasure seeing him as he reminds us of Nicks.

The man on the right, Nick, is also a former classmate of Nicholas. Nick wasn't part of our Nicks circle of friends at Knox Grammar, but has grown close to Robert and Cameron in the subsequent years.

Here is Janny, my Mum with Robert.

From left to right, Nick, Janny, Robert, Robin and Cameron.


Laurel Wreath said...

Oh Jen I am sorry. I can realize always thinking of your brother as that 18 year old. And I would think something like this would open old wounds.

My brother is a police officer and I fear for his life daily. I am so sorry for your loss in your brother, I know how broken I would be.

You are such a lovely lady in these pictures.

May you find peace and comfort during this time.

Anonymous said...

Oh my god.

I just went into your 'BLOG'
Christ !!!!!

I balled my eyes out........ I had no idea, it had been so long for you. Not seeing Robert I mean. Mum and I, have been able to keep in contact with Robert over the years, due to him being in Sydney. The penny has dropped with me now. The photos of the boys shoulders, has an extra meaning now. What a weekend! I just love the photos. Have you heard from Robin?
I am looking forward to this weekend.. to rest. This week has been busy catching up. .....
My god, your BLOG is becoming 'Days of our Lives'... great read...
Love Tan Tan