Tabatha Deans

Bringing Integrity to the Written Word

Facing the Past

I came face to face with my past, standing in line for the viewing of Madison, surrounded by people I grew up with. The parents look much the same, only older. Many of the kids my age are unrecognizable, most of them are large and look bloated and unhappy. Perhaps it’s just in my mind that I look relatively the same.
Thus far my return has been somewhat low-key and anonymous, my name being seen in print with no physical presence to accompany it. That changed tonight. i was there, connections were made and I’m sure various opinions/judgments were made and or resurrected.
At the funeral I was sitting in the pew of the church, the same one I attended when I was small, and flashed back to my younger days. I remember watching as certain members reached past my mother to greet my father, disregarding her presence as an outsider. I look around and see members and remember my interactions with them, or remember their ignorance of me and my family.
But I hold my head high, singular in the crowd, disregarding looks from those who think they know me. I’m proud of who I am, what I do and who I’ve become.
The FUNERAL: They wheeled the closed casket through the aisle, followed by the mother, who has just closed the lid on her child’s life forever. The mom who will never look into her daughter’s eyes again, never hear her laugh, never hear her voice, never smell her essence again.
I watch the grandfather, the “cantankerous” old man, wipe tears from his eyes, like a great stone that has been shattered to little pieces with the single blow of a hammer. People, friends and family speak about the young girl’s life, the impact she made, and how she would want them to be happy.
And, as only small towns do anymore, we all gathered in the parking lot for a police escort to the cemetery. There were at least one full city block of law enforcement cars leading the way. She was a dispatcher by profession, and everyone with a badge for fifty miles around came to give her a proper sendoff. They blocked the streets, and following them were at least another six city blocks of cars with their headlights on. She was well known and well liked, and while the drive was for a tragic reason, the fan fare that she received was well deserved.
The services were followed by dinner at the church, including the infamous “funeral potatoes” which were delicious.

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June 13, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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