Friday, February 5, 2010


It is one thing to expect proper behavior from your child in public under normal circumstances... but tell me, how do you expect it at his father's funeral?

My youngest was five when his dad died.

As we sat at the funeral my family lined the front row of pews in the church, along with members of my husband's family. I was sitting there with my sisters right beside me and my children. The youngest, for some reason, refused to sit next to me as the services began. He gravitated towards the casket and ended up sitting directly under it. We tried to coax him out - but he would not come. I had two options... 1. Make a scene with him screaming as I attempted to drag him out from under there in the middle of the funeral or 2. Leave him there.

I opted to leave him alone...

As the funeral progressed, my sisters and I had our peripheral vision on him. He just sat under there for awhile... then he untied his shoes. Gradually he began tying the shoelaces of one shoe around the foot of the stand which held the casket. He then tied his other shoe laces to the stand next to the casket that was holding a bouquet of flowers. Once he had finished his task, he sat.

The funeral services continued and my sisters and I enjoyed the services with one eye up front and one eye on the little five year old boy sitting under the casket. Finally, he grew tired of his position under the casket and went to move. Just as he snapped his legs back to allow himself to move out, the stand that was holding the flowers started to topple with the flowers. The attendees behind us, no doubt, got a chuckle at seeing a row of girls dive in unison to catch the falling flowers.

At that very moment my son remembered he was still tied to the stand and settled back in to untie his shoelaces. The stand stood back up. The flowers went back in place and the service continued with only a questioning glance from the presiding leader from our church.

I returned the look with a smile and my sisters and I took a deep breath and welcomed my son as he rejoined us in the pew.


  1. I remember this as it was yesterday. I remember I cried for the first time that day as I watched him contently sit by his daddy-right where he belonged.

  2. How do you fight with that? His last chance to sit by his father's mortal body in church. I liked that he tied his shoelaces around the stand. As if to make if more premanant - like he was 'tied' to him and no one could take him away.