Monday, March 10, 2008

The Funeral

My father in law's funeral was this past weekend. I've never seen so many people at a funeral. My experience with such things are pretty limited. But, wow. It was just amazing. He was a teacher and a coach for 39 years. There were three generations of students and athletes...and friends. It was overwhelming.

This man drove me crazy sometimes but I'm so glad that I knew him. I knew him more intimately than most of those people. I feel glad that I knew him better because I had 17 years of knowing the true character of this man. But I also knew his flaws and the effect of his selflessness on his family. All three of his children speak of how much his involvement with other people's children affected their childhoods. Because he coached other people's kids, he rarely saw his own children compete. And they competed fiercely so their dad would hear about it from other coaches. Because he spent hours and hours after school with other people's children, he didn't have a chance to help his own kids with homework. But they were good students who knew that nothing less would be accepted.

In his retirement he worked hard to make up for those lost years and he did an amazing job. We all joke that he made up for lost time with his grandkids. He was all that a grandpa should be.

I hate this period of regretting the things I said or didn't say. I hate feeling aggravated by him...I feel guilty for it!

But the bottom line is that he's the father of my husband. And I love my father in law for his roll in making my man the man he is.

Can this part be over with now?


Jennifer said...

I'm so sorry for your loss.

Ramble On said...

Very nice thoughts at a very difficult time. May the pleasant memories live in your heart forever.