I told you that I hated the word “funeral.” Maybe it’s the writer in me, but I hate the word because I hate what it connotes. Sadness. Darkness. It’s an ugly word. When I think that in reality that we should never let anyone die in sadness.
“funeral” sounds like we’re putting someone to rest and will never let them come out again. It sounds like you’re allowing yourself to forget the good.
I’ve always thought it better to remember, to celebrate the life someone lived. No one you love should ever die in vain [thank you, Neville Longbottom] and no one you love should ever die in sadness.
So I guess that’s why today at camp, instead of being sad we brought a little happy to camp. I called it “The happy thoughts game” and the entire camp came together to share the things that made us happy. Yellow ribbons tied in our hair and our hearts heavy with reasons to cry, we talked about our families and our favorite foods and our dogs and things we loved.
And I wasn’t going to cry.
Until one camper said “It makes me happy when I come to camp having a bad day, and leave camp having an amazing day.”
I looked to my left and right at my brothers whose hands I was holding and I smiled a tearful smile because that’s all I could really do.
It wasn’t a funeral. The kids probably didn’t even know we were sad. But nonetheless it was beautiful. I want to film their toothless faces and their singsong voices telling me about how dodgeball and hawaiian pizza make them happy and challenge you not to cry because they’re just so innocent and sweet and AH! It kills me.
I’m starting to ramble now.
I guess what I really wanted to say was that life is always worth celebrating, even when it’s lost. Especially when it’s lost. Cherish the fleeting moments we may have and hold tightly to the ones you can’t recreate.
Just please, smile at the sun. Cry when you need to. Cry whenever you want to. But smile. Because it’s beautiful when you do.