Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Teresa May 11/18/27 - 4/11/07

It has been an overwhelming week. Teresa's wake was Sunday afternoon. Over 500 people came through Conley's Funeral Home to pay their respects. We wore bows in our hair in Teresa's honor- her bows were her pride and joy. It was nice to spend time with family and see relatives and friends I hadn't seen in awhile. At 6:30 there was a visitation service where people shared their favorite memories of Teresa. If my thoughts had been more pulled together I would have talked about the time I learned Teresa was a White Sox fan (she always tended to agree with her favorite great-niece...me!) or when my former Aunt Linda and I pulled Teresa out on the dance floor at my cousin's wedding. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. My grandpa shared the eulogy he had written earlier and that is when my emotions got the best of me. He read, "What will we do without our Teresa?" alluding to an inside joke between my grandma and Teresa. After the service the visitation line continued as not everyone had had a chance to go through before the service. It was a long but encouraging day to see how many people had been affected by my aunt. The church was full for the funeral Monday morning. My grandma asked me to help place the pall (a cloth) over the casket at the beginning of the funeral, which I was honored to do. I was most affected by the music selected and when my grandpa read the eulogy again. Originally I was going to leave after the luncheon and work a half day but the hospice team members that came for the service convinced me that I needed to go to the burial as well. A decision I'm glad I made. Bruce Conley, the funeral director and a close family friend, added so many special touches. Everyone at the cemetery was given a packet of wildflower seeds to be planted in Teresa's memory. After the service, they released a dove which was an amazing thing to see. There's so much I could say and yet I'm still so overwhelmed and exhausted by these last few days. After the service I went back to my grandparents' house for a few hours to spend more time with family. I joked with my cousin Pat that I wasn't going to know what to do with myself once I didn't get to see him all the time. There are a lot of adjustments ahead for us all but especially for my grandma. At the same time, life goes on. Today my dad had knee surgery. Mark Buehrle built his confidence. And I need to find the balance between work and home, especially now while the lines are blurred. What will we do without our Teresa? It's hard to say and too soon to tell.

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