Sunday, August 23, 2009

Notes from my grandfather's funeral

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Today was my grandfather’s funeral. Last night we had his wake. His wake. My grandfather’s wake. His funeral. His funeral. His funeral. If I say it enough it sinks in. My grandfather will not sit in his chair anymore. Or ask when I’m coming to see him again. Or answer the phone when I call. Or tell me he loves me. Anymore. Not in the way I’m used to hearing it anyway.

The service was beautiful. The church was packed with friends and family and church members. He touched so many people. All the tears. All the joy. All the smiles. All the wonderful souls that are better because Andrew Scott was on the planet.

He was ready to go. We all knew it. He held on for us. He missed his wife. He missed his children. He has his wings.

The children spoke so well. Uraeus will be a very strong speaker. Bishop asked who wanted to speak and stood up proudly and when time walked boldly to the microphone. He has the kind of presence that makes you stop and listen. He takes his own pauses. He does rush to meet your ear clock. He reminds me of Bubba in that way. Yes. He’s great. Terrin, Dee Dee’s daughter, is another young powerful speaker. Only ten and already has that…voice. Deep for a young girl and raspy without being too mature. Her style is different. She more direct while Uraeus speaks in metaphors. They are great. Watch. And then there is young Amari, Tasha’s daughter, eleven years old. When she speaks in front of a crowd I imagine she is speaking to the board of directors of some corporation. Each word carefully chosen. Her tone just right. Mark my words. These three orators.

But back to the services. I was honored to speak on the program. He would have wanted me to. It was my honor. To call him grandfather. To call him friend.

A few highlights for me at the service, besides the children speaking, were hearing Yolanda lead such a powerful prayer. I stood there feeling like I was the only one in the room and we were holding hands and she was praying just for me. Then hearing Mary Jo Miller sing “How I got over.” That is already one of my favorite songs and her delivery just sent me over. She is and older woman, spunky, with one of those old Mahalia Jackson voices and still young enough to have to sass to deliver it. Dee Dee is amazing! That woman can change the energy in a room at will. She and Maurice delivered special acknowledgements and memories about Granddaddy. Maurice, looking JUST like Granddaddy and I was so…still. I sat there listening to this man whom I’ve heard crack jokes most of my life, really really take on being the man of this family. I’m looking forward to many conversations with him. My sister, Roshann, of course and as usual was used by God up there in the pulpit and shape shifted the energy in the room from funeral to praise in two seconds or less. Felicia sang, sangsangsang, as she always does and lifted my spirit, again. Bishop Hearns spoke about the humility of Granddaddy and the power of God. The majority of his text came from Job. Don’t remember the scripture, but that part where Job started thinking maybe that he was somehow owe’d something by God and God had to remind him of a thing or two by asking, “Where were you when I created the heavens and the earth?...” That’s the passage that always checks my ego quickly.

So, I’ve covered the lot of the service but still haven’t touched on the best part of the day. At the gravesite, Deja had to pee real bad. She was dancing and twisting and so my mother, took her behind a tree so Deja could work it out. When we finished praying, I looked up and Deja was coming from nowhere pulling up those Easter white stockings way over her navel. Then straightened out that dress and looked up like, what?

We went back to the church and ate. Ate. Came back to the house and played cards and ate. Ate. The new fly crew, Dee Dee’s and Maurice’s beautiful daughters went out bowling or Denny’s or somewhere. I am officially old. I came home and had girl talk with Yolanda, Tasha, Sherrell and then later Mercedes. My mother, Larry and Pat watched a movie downstairs. That was the day. The healing continues.

No comments:

Post a Comment