Yesterday I asked myself what this blog was for. Today I woke up with an explanation.
She wanted a proper Irish wake, so we gave her one, a big gathering of family and friends at the house. There was even music thanks to some of our friends. There was no body, since she also wanted to go to medical school to help train another generation of doctors. We got her into her first choice, Harvard. Some day I will get her ashes back, but we had the wake without her.
Over the years at various wakes and funerals for family members she took the opportunity to explain what an Irish wake was really for at it’s core. It is a celebration of the life, not a mourning of the death. All the people, all the time, and yes, even the alcohol were there for one purpose: to make sure all the stories were told. All of them. We joked she had so many stories to be told that the wake would last three or four days. Indeed, we had many of the same people back at the house the next day after the memorial service for a second pass, a bit more subdued.
I am still here in the house, living here alone now for a while longer yet as I finish polishing it up and get it ready to sell. I’m still in the same house, writing this blog, and still telling stories. For me, that Irish wake hasn’t ended, because I’m not done telling the stories.
I’m never going to be done telling the stories.
But when I hand this place over to someone else, then I can finally leave the wake.