Move Over Mary Poppins!

The real life adventures of one nanny, her husband, child, dogs, house, and whatever else crosses her path.

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Monday, February 12, 2007

The Sudden Weight of Maturity

There are moments, I assume, in everyone's lifetime, when they feel the sudden weight of age and maturity. For me, today, holding my husband's hand while we walked behind the hearse from the church to the cemetery was one of those moments. I felt like an adult. And yes, I know that I am, and have been for some years, an adult, but I mostly don't feel like one. I still feel like my parents' little girl, despite my house, my husband, my dog, and the children I'm raising.

The face of mortality, I'm certain, had something to do with it. Seeing a family in mourning for someone who died at 57 years old, after an inexplicable illness and rapid decline inevitably reminds you that you're not going to live forever. Accepting your place as a mourner in a family you've chosen reminds you that they're not going to live forever. That thought was sobering, but it also served for me as a mark of passage. I will mourn with my husband again, and he will with me, because death is a part of life, and life is what we're doing together.

This isn't the first time I've lost people important to me. And while I had affection for Mark's aunt, and my love for his family makes my heart ache for their loss, her death doesn't affect me as personally as it does my husband and his family. Why then should this funeral elicit these thoughts? I can't say. Perhaps as every life affects the lives around it differently, so does every death.

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