My ex-husband passed away 9 days ago. When I tried to wake him up to tell him I was going to work he didn’t respond. Our son Bear and I watched the paramedics try to revive him but we both knew he was already gone before they arrived.
What followed was surreal, strangely calming in its ordinariness and how we managed with unusual capability to plan his funeral. We both held it together, still are, in fact, though we have tried to find moments to be left alone and I’ve tried to give Bear his privacy when he’s wanted it and to listen when he wants to talk. I’ve also had to help other people when they lost it or started to lose it, even when I least felt like it because I was the only one available.
What I want to say here is simple, a public service announcement for those who encounter someone who is in mourning. DO NOT ASK “WHAT HAPPENED?” “WHAT DID HE OR SHE DIE FROM?” Why? Because, Dear Reader, it is none of your f@cking business. The worst, absolute worst thing, a person in shock, hurting and already on the edge needs is to explain what happened. You already know what happened. He or she died. That’s it, period. Besides the cause of death will come out eventually, usually whispered about within earshot of the mourners.
I say this because nearly everyone I told and had to talk to asked this useless question. Ironically the only one who didn’t was the funeral director.