I’m drained and have a stupid headache, not a good combination. Yesterday was a very long day, it was the funeral procession for my grandfather. Death is not something that I handle particularly well, especially not sitting in the front row looking it right in the face. I was nervous, nervous because I had to do a Reading from the Book of Ecclesiastes Chapter 3 Verses 1-8. A little background on me, I’m a good reader however public speaking gets me extremely nervous. Always have been like that, I’ll start reading at a decent pace and then I speed up sometimes forgetting that people have to actually understand what I’m saying. So that coupled with the fact that I was reading at a FUNERAL, I was nervous of not crying or stumbling upon my words. When it was my turn to do the reading, I thought “Breathe Aneka, breathe… read slowly… don’t cry”. As I started reading, it’s as if the words soothed my soul. The words were:
A Time for Everything
1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
As I read it, I felt like this was not a time to cry but rather a time to celebrate. My grandfather lived a very fruitful life, he suffered in his last days and he finally was given the oppurtunity to meet our Creator. How could I possibly be sad for that? As the funeral service progressed, it was time for the Preacher to give his sermon. His first statement was, “What you can’t change, don’t let it change you“. I sat there and was instantly enthralled by what he was saying. He stressed the fact that this should not be a time of sadness and a time of rejoicement. The more the preacher laughed and joked I felt as though he somehow had known my grandfather (that was his personality), he seemed so at ease with the words that he was speaking. I’ve never seen such a sermon at a funeral, there was no crying out but rather laughter and chants of “yes yes” and “Amennnn”. After the preachers sermon, the steelband player opted to play an upbeat song instead of the usual sombre Church hymn. He played a Calyspo song “One for the road”, people were singing along and tapping their feet. That is what my grandfather would have wanted, he loved to be center of attention and loved all things Trinidad. His last wish was to be buried in Trinidad with the rest of his family.
I made a promise to myself that I was not going to wear all dark clothing (despite my moms concerns) and opted for a pale blue top and gray skirt. I don’t believe in those rules anymore where you have to wear all black in order to show your respect. I consider the act of wearing all black to be very sad and sombre, I strongly believe you should celebrate the fact that the person that passed was in your life and you appreciate them for it.
To all my family, my mom/siblings/niece & nephew/cousins/aunts/uncles/grandparents. I love you for everything. For being there for me from the bucktoothed little kid to the slightly bucktoothed adult. I appreciate you
To my friends, my true ride or die through everything friends, I love you. You seriously don’t know how much I appreciate you. I don’t have a lot of people I consider to be real friends, so those that I do have I cherish you and you know I’ll fight to the end for you. That’s real
When I die I want everyone to try and smile at least, I don’t want everyone to be crying and what not. Play some Beyonce and Jay-Z and have a big party, I’m oh so serious lol. I think I’m going to go write that in my will right now…