Yesterday in the mail was Z’s death certificate. It was notarized, certified, embossed, and filed. It has been officially recognized by the state that she won’t ever come home for dinner or call me again.
Tonight, I’ll put her certificates with his certificates.
Two makes a collection and I’m the unwilling curator of a collection of death certificates wherein I’m listed as the next-of-kin. I also have a collection of full urns in my kitchen.
This second go-round has moved me into the professional category. I’m a pro at funeral arranging and my poignant-yet-not-over-the-top service song choices are quite impressive.
I’m a pro at holding up and being stoic. I’m a pro at making other people feel okay when I’m in pieces.
I’ve done a total of 13 eulogies over the years – so I’m absolutely a professional there.
Twice I’ve been first in the list of certified survivors. He is survived by his wife, Amy. She is survived by her mother, Amy. I’m a professional survivor as well.
There is something about holding onto a piece of paper that recognizes the end of her life as an official event that is so… final (?) in a unique way.
Her birth certificate was a different matter altogether. I wasn’t as moved by that. It wasn’t so meaningful because I had a baby to accompany that certificate. When I got her birth certificate I didn’t re-read it over and over until I couldn’t see through my tears. I didn’t have the feeling of pounding universe in my chest then like I do now.
I have an urn and a bedroom full of ephemera and her life is reduced to these two notarized proclamations of event. Certifications that bookend her entire existence without ceremony or fanfare or emotion. They are merely statement of fact and circumstance.
0 stars. Would not recommend.