Wednesday, July 16, 2008

serving tea to death

Yesterday I spent the morning making a potato and a fresh vegetable salad. Then I went to Bunny's funeral. In my world food and death are inextricably connected. (Maybe that is why when I get sad, I eat.)
His was the crying-est funeral I have ever been to. Not the tragic kind of crying, but the kind that you do when a baby is born, or a miracle happens, or a great moment comes to an end. Come to think of it, it was the laughing-est funeral too. Bunny had no pretentions, he was a common man with a beautiful life. He allowed us to be alive to our emotions. His funeral was filled with an "interesting pain."

A friend wrote this about it this way:
I stood there looking at the body of Bunny. He seemed so un-Bunny. He seemed so small.
Then I thought of some of the calling hours that I have attended throughout my life. I remember going to calling hours of people that were not larger than life persons. The type of person that hardly lives life at all. It seemed that [in death they were not much smaller than in life.]

For those who live life to the fullest, whose laughter and smile can fill a room, whose presence can make such a difference, when they die their death is felt in equal proportion to how they lived life. It was then that I realized that "a very large Bunny, leaves a very large hole."
I want to live my life that way, living large. I want there to be a noticeable difference when I die. I want people to say, "Wow, that doesn't look like Tammy at all." I don't want people to come in and say, "She looks good, no noticeable difference." I want there to be an inverse relationship between my life and death.

Let's admit it, everyone felt pain following Bunny's death, but it was an interesting pain. It was the pain that Tennyson wrote of: "I hold it true, whate'er befall; I feel it, when I sorrow most; 'Tis better to have loved and lost Than never to have loved at all."

So yesterday I served tea to death. And I felt more acutely than ever that life is a miracle. All of life. And I didn't mind that death had to have it's time. Like Tammy, I want to live in such a way that my dead body is very 'un-bunny'.


Karen said...

What an amazing tribute, and oh, how I hope I live so well my presence leaves a hole. How sad would it be to die and not be missed.

jeremiah said...

beautiful words.

you'll definitely be un-bunny, no doubt about it.