Thursday, August 11, 2011

Becca's Burial

The line was endless it seemed. I think everyone went to the burial ceremony which I don't think happens very much.

I don't know how the tradition started, but the lights and blinkers were on and flashing and even the traffic going the opposite direction pulled over to a stop and many turned on their lights as well. It was strangely comforting to me that complete strangers would be so kind to show their respect for our loss.
We even saw a semi truck pull over. I'm sure they waited a long time for us all to pass because that was one long line!

Becca's body was put to rest near her family's home out in the country near her grandpa's grave. The cemetary is super close to her family's home for which I'm thankful so the girls can visit as often as they like.

Like I said, I think everyone came to the graveside ceremony as well. It was packed. We prayed together and Pastor Pat shared a few words for the family. I think we sang something. My mind was a blur a bit at this point.

This was it. This was goodbye.

Goodbye for now that is.

Pastor Pat dismissed everyone but family, so they could have their own special time together.
Becca's mom glanced back and asked if we would stay. Thank-you for that. That was unexpected and we were all touched by your kindness in sharing those next precious minutes.

Becca's girls let two red rose balloons go up, up in the air. I'd link to think their mama caught them. We watched those two balloons get tinier and tinier. I don't know what the symbolism is exactly, but I think it is a sweet way for children to "let go" of their loved ones.

Bye-Bye balloons.

Pray for these two precious girls would you? Karis seems to be holding this weight on her shoulders with all the responsibilty of a mature adult and Gabi is only 3. I'm sure they both miss their mama as their reality has begun to set in I'm sure. And pray for their Daddy who is now both Mommy and Daddy. Can't even imagine...

Gabi began to cry and whimper off and on for her mommy.
I can't even type what she said. It's too hard.

We sang "Amazing Grace" and "Great is Thy Faithfulness." ~ Becca's favorite...

I've never seen this before, but each family member beginning with Dustin threw a shovel full of dirt on her coffin. I think it took that man 5 minutes to be able to do it. I think Jared's heart broke right then and there. Next, the girls, each with their own mini shovel. Then Becca's mom and dad followed by her sisters. It was beyond moving and I felt so blessed to be able to be a part of such an intimate time.

Allison, Anna, and I each dropped a yellow rose into her grave symbolizong our friendships, and then together dropped a white rose symbolizing her own state of perfection now at the feet of Jesus. It was beautiful and heart wrenching.

Becca's parents, Brian and Kristy

Becca's Grandma, Ivy

What a strong woman!

Becca's sister, Faith

Monday, August 8, 2011

Laura Story - Blessings

Becca's Celebration

The Funeral.

It was by far the most difficult day up until this point. The air was heavy. I had slept horrible the night before. I was extremely nervous about singing for the funeral. I wanted it to be perfect for Becca's family, and perfection and the notion that at any given moment I could throw up - do not go together.

I woke up early and got myself and the children ready in the hotel room. I took off early with Allison to practice and Alexis tagged along as Allison had asked her to be her page turner. I know it was a small task, but I know it thrilled Lexie's heart to do this and in some strange way, it warmed my heart that Becca's little flower girl was helping out 7 years later at her funeral by flipping the music pages for Allison. Thank-you for that.

I wasn't able to eat at all that morning or for lunch for that matter, but I wasn't the least bit hungry either.

We went through my song, "Blessings" by Laura's story, and waited until the service began.

Thankfully, her family had mercy on my heart and I was able to sing right after the opening prayer.

The Lord was faithful and His mercy I pray shown through as I made it through the song without completely falling apart. I had read this song to Becca over the phone just a few weeks before when she was in the hopsital and had the priviledge to sing it for her mom and sisters the day we visited Becca. The whole songs relates pretty true to her situation and if you haven't heard it, give it a click one of these days.

Allison was able to play beautifully for the whole thing just as she had for Becca's wedding. It was super special and hard all at the same time.

I know I'm completely biased, but her funeral was an amazing celebration of her life. I've never cried and laughed so hard all in the same hour and a half. Becca's dear friend, Teresa, shared a memoir of Becca. I can't even tell you exactly what she said except that I cried and laughed so hard Austin thought I was going to vomit all over him. ( Aaaahh... children.) Thank-you Teresa. It was a perfect summary of what kind of friend she was, and you shared it with your heart open wide, bearing your own soul. It was beautiful, hilarious, and heart wrenching all rolled into one.

It was strangley comforting to see Becca's other dear friends that I knew she loved and cared for so deeply. I had met all of them and so as each one showed up, I felt a wave of my own appreciation for their sacrifice I'm sure they made to travel many, many miles from states like Wisconson, Florida, Texas, and even Brazil. My Robin was a very loved woman. And a fine woodchopper too. (Wink. Wink.)

Then her man got up and shared. Sigh...... He bore his soul it seemed with the strength that only His Saviour could give. He was open, honest, and real. He was funny and he broke our hearts, and all the while, he pointed us to Christ.

Then her baby sis, Faith sang. She could be a recording artist she's so talented. Yes, she's really that good. She wrote the song at Becca's request. She played the guitar. And she did what Faith does best. She sang her heart out. For her sister, and for the Lord's glory. I know He got His share that day. And He's not done yet...

Then Becca's Pastor shared. It was an amazing gospel message without just throwing a bunch of Scripture in our faces. The theme: God's Glory.

" The day of one's death is better than the day of one's birth." Pastor Pat brought this verse alive and I encourage you all to listen to the message yourself. You think of the joy that a birth brings and then you think of death. How could that be better?! But as I thought about it, for her, for Becca, for my Robin, of course it was better than birth. She met her Saviour the moment she passed from this life. This is not her home. It never was. She's home now. Her eternity has begun. What more could we want?

"To live is Christ, to die is gain." I wrote this to Becca in the last card I mailed her. She never read it. But she's living it. I can promise you that.

God's glory was and is more important than Becca's life.

I saw it shining down on her face in that bedroom the day we visited her and I see it peeking out almost every day in some small way to me. And I know it's true. His glory is more important than life itself. The day of her death was better than the day of her birth. Scripture does not lie. And in my darkest moments, I cling to these truths. That and I hope she's enjoying some serious Rocky Road ice cream. Heaven style. Take a bite for me Robin. For Your Batman. I could use some. Cause' man, I miss you. I miss you Batman style.

The "Cousins"

I love that Karis thinks I'm her aunt and my children are her cousins. I hope I can fool her for a lifetime.

Becca's girls lit up like a Christmas tree when they saw Lexie, and Gabi, who is not easily won over, climbed right up into that girls' lap. I have yet to win her over! HA! My life's secret mission: Gabi Rae!

"As for God, His way is perfect. Your loving kindness is better than life." ~ Psalms 18:30

Dustin with his two girls. Gabi wore her mommy's favorite dress on her. It matches her golden hair perfectly. Becca would've been proud. And Karis beamed when she saw me and gave me a big "Kare Bear" hug. Love that little girl! I feel like I'm looking at a mini Becca when I look at her and sometimes I had to concentrate on not squeezing her too hard. It was like she was right there again...