Our fascination with death is another one I thought most families shared. Nope. We're special like that. We're a morbid family. SK loves to point this out. And it bothered him for so long. We talk about death more than any family I've met. I guess I thought that every family had a picture of their dead Uncle Gene sandwiched between pictures of their trip to Disneyworld & that year's Christmas photo. My mother hates when we argue (funny because it always happens) & she figures that she can control us from beyond the grave. A long time ago, someone wanted something when they died & she quickly say, "Put your name on the back of it." Currently, all of the big pieces have a name scribbled on the back.
My father is very worried that no one will properly give his eulogy & he wants to record one. I'm sure it's already done. Our parents decided that this topic would be perfect for the 2008 Christmas season. After dinner, they asked us to gather in the basement so we could watch his eulogy. He told everyone that he really wanted us to watch his eulogy so he could see our reaction in person. Tweak it. See which dead jokes get a laugh & pepper it with more. After minutes of arguing the wrongness of this, we all gave in & stomped downstairs. Mom put in the DVD & it turns out she created a movie of every Christmas that our family has had. You might be saying, "How sweet." Yes. It was. But what would have been sweeter? Being told that it was a stroll down Christmas lane & not a Death lane!!
Death is used on all levels. The inevitable. We know their wishes & who's got the wills. And the guilty. Whenever we suggest that we'd like to stay home for one Christmas in three years, we hear this tune from our mother: "That's fine. We don't have many Christmas-es left in us, you know." Our mother was saying this when she was in her fifties! Fifties, for god sake!
Because it's been made very clear to me that Mom won't always be there, I've got to make some changes. Who am I going to call when I need to know how many yards of fleece to buy for a blanket? How long does cottage cheese really last past the expiration date? Am I going to have to purchase commercial receiving blankets for new babies? Commercial ones are never big enough to swaddle. Who's going to sew a zipper in for me? This week, I made a Big Girl decision. I'll sew my own zipper in. My mom would have whipped it in with her machine. Perfect stitches. The zipper wouldn't snag on the wool when you pull it up. Not mine, people. I used a needle & thread. But I did it. It isn't perfect. Hell, I've only done it this one time! Next time I'll try hemming my own pants.
p.s. SK has given in to our family. Once when we were alone & he told, "Don't worry. I put my name on the bottom of it."
p.s. To further point out our wackiness: Ava & I often talked about what should be on our funeral Play-List. Mine is as followed:
Thrill is Gone: B.B. King
Fancy: Reba Mcentire
Nothing Compares: Sinead O' Connor
Last Good-bye: Jeff Buckley
Yours: Blues Traveler
Pussy Control: Prince
I'm a Slave for You: Britney Spears
Gypsies Tramps & Thieves: Cher
Hallelujah: Jeff Buckley
I Surrender: Celine Dion
My My My: Johnny Gill
Top of the World: Dixie Chicks
I'm sure there's a ton I missed. I should write them down somewhere important. And yes, I know the some of the titles sound good & morbid, but the lyrics aren't. I just love those songs.
I'll get some actions shots of Vivian as soon as I get my Mom to sew down the other side of the ribbon. She is still alive after all. . .