A Family Death

Today was a sad day for me. I attended a memorial service for the son of a previous employer. I spent more than a decade working for that company and became very well acquainted with the owner. We experienced many great highs and deep lows in that close working relationship. Most people never really understand how much we become inter-twined in families of people we work with on a daily basis. Normally it’s not the case in the corporate world due to the fear of getting too close because of promotions or transfers into other offices or departments. But when there are only two people working together, there seems to be more of an unspoken understanding of each other’s boundaries. If only our separate families knew what we shared about our families with each other freely, they would mortified. While in the church today I found myself thinking of only the most delightful times working at that office. The broker discovered that if she would get me started on a funny subject, I would continue to build on anecdotal remarks which at times world bring us both to tears of laughter. We became very well acquainted with each other’s families based only on what we found appropriate to tell. We both came from two distinctly different families, thus we discovered from each other, yet a different side of family life. My broker came from a very patriarchal family and I came from a matriarchal family. We were both surely shocked in hearing what was allowed and what was not within our families. I was so terribly sad today to the point of tears seeing my work-mate hurt so much from the death of her son. What did give me a sort of spiritual comfort was when we had a very heart-felt chat. I know she will survive this ordeal and I as well know that I have done all I could for her in this time of sorrow. I sometimes think she is walking in a similar path with my family because my Mother as well buried a beloved daughter not so many years ago. It does take its toll on a mother. There is something so wrong when a parent has to bury a child because it’s not so much the physical body being carried away but the loss of something that was created to live beyond the life of the one who gave it. Long ago, I learned not to be sad for the death of someone, but rather for those who have to continue living without their beloved. A death in the family is something we all fear.

Joe Chodur

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