Last week The Curate came across an incident on the moor where the emergency services were doing everything they could to save the life of a fit looking man, who was of similar age to The Curate. The Curate's role was to turn the traffic back down the road until the ambulance left. He didn't know the man's name but he knew that whoever he was, it was unlikely that he had survived. A shocking start to the day.
The following day, the pieces of the story began to unfold as a work colleague of mine talked of a good friend dying very suddenly. The Curate was contacted to arrange the funeral and over the last week he got to know the family - with two sons only slightly younger than ours. And yesterday, nearly 300 people met to remember a much loved husband, father, inspiring teacher and sports coach.
Over the week, I have watched from the sidelines as The Curate visited the family, helping them to shape the sort of farewell they wanted to give this man. As a trainee verger, yesterday I welcomed people into the church, many already in tears and others unable to hold tears back when they saw the photos on the order of service. There were so many young people - from the school where he worked, his sons' friends and his relatives. I watched them being allowed to remember with tributes from a colleague, his sons and his wife, bible verses and hymns - and being allowed to grieve. I watched The Curate stand by one son and encouraging him to finish by reading with him. I listened as The Curate read out memories for some who felt they couldn't do it. And I watched the slow process of healing beginning.
As they filed from the church - there were red eyes and smiles, chatter and sharing of recollections as well as the playing of a lively song which caused people to smile as they recalled its relevance in this man's life. It was clear that this service of remembrance had served its purpose. And I realised that this is part of what The Curate feels called to do. He would never have been able to describe the event to me had I not been there. And I now know, with certainty, that I want to be beside him.For some time I have begun to feel quite differently about the life changes he made to become ordained. I have felt a huge cloud lifting since the travelling has stopped. - I don't think I realised quite how tired I really was most of the time. I sometimes stop and wonder what the strange feeling is that I am feeling more and more.- I think it is contentment! So, having toyed with the idea of removing 'reluctant' from the name of this blog, I have now decided to end this blog..........and start again with a new blog that will record the second half of being the 'Curate's wife'.
Thank you for staying with me and for all the encouraging comments as I tried to make sense of where life was taking me. Do join me for 'The Other Half '. I'd love to see you there.