Great grandma looked pretty in her blue dress with white polka dots. Hair perfectly coiffed and makeup looking as if it was applied by a Hollywood makeup artist. She looked as lovely as she did on her and great grandpa’s 50th wedding anniversary, the other time she wore the same dress.
However, on this occasion she was lying in her casket.
I was 3 years and 10 months old. Dad was holding me trying to explain this will happen to me someday. Upon seeing great-grandma, I let out a scream that caused everyone to freeze in their tracks.
At that age, I did not have the mental ability to comprehend that “someday” would be years away. There also was no understanding on my part that it was a good thing great-grandma was with Jesus.
As you can probably guess, there were nightmares. Poor mom had to console me when I woke up from them.
That is the earliest memory and my only memory of great-grandma.
Lesson to be learned from this – young children do NOT belong at funeral homes viewing dead bodies. They DO belong at the funeral meal afterward so they learn the importance of family gathering during tough times.
Children need to experience laughter. lasagna and other casseroles, and relatives pinching their chubby cheeks at these gatherings. The love they will feel is what is important.
Hopefully my earliest memory (today’s prompt) will save at least one young child the trauma caused by viewing a dead body.
Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. Michele is the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com.