Jackie did not want a funeral, so today we had a big party, just like she wanted. A celebration. It was at a winery at the top of a hill, not far from where she grew up, with the most gorgeous view of the valley below.
We wore our brightest clothes and our tallest shoes, because Jackie said good shoes were worth the bloody feet. I’ve never really subscribed to this theory, which is why most of my shoes are flip-flops.
Everything was beautiful. Her parents both spoke, as did her brother and both of her sisters, and their words were gorgeous, touching, and funny. I was honored to speak about Jackie’s time at USC. I’ve written thousands of words about Jackie but I really struggled with this. I rewrote it a dozen times. It was so hard. I hope I did her proud.
After the speeches there was a slide show, and then it was party time. We told stories and laughed. There were tears, but not from me. I wanted to cry, but I felt wrung out. I didn’t cry at Maddie’s funeral, either. I just couldn’t.
But now that I sit here in a bed that’s not mine, with Annie snoring next to me, I am so tired. I haven’t slept in weeks. But maybe tonight I finally will.
I’m sure Jackie! would have been proud.
I’ll just bet you did do her proud. … I hope you get some sleep.
I hope you go on Jackie’s Facebook Page b/c the feed back about the celebration is all the same…”IT WAS BEAUTIFUL – especially, ALL of the Stories about Jackie”!! This is why I KNOW you did an excellent job and there isn’t 1 doubt in my mind – I am as SURE as I can possibily be YOU made Jackie PROUD!!!!! You have such a BEAUTIFUL way with words Heather!! I thought about you the whole day – knowing how difficult of a day it would be but praying yourself, Mike & of course all of Jackie’s family & close friends got thru the day okay!!
I also hope you sleep tonight Pretty Mama. I will of course continue to be here for you and I will pray for your strength, comfort, peace, rest and MANY fun and Beautiful Memories of your Jackie and of course Maddie….ALWAYS MADDIE!!
Take Care Heather!
Wishing you peace.
Lynn from For Love or Funny says:
I agree with all the comments above – especially the one about wishing you peace.
I agree with everyone else. I KNOW you did Jackie! proud. You have such a beautiful way with words and such a loving heart that there is no other way it could be. Wishing you peace of mind and pray for restful sleep for you finally. ((hugs))
You’re a gifted writer. Without a doubt, you did her proud.
Beth Mariel says:
Jackie must be so glad I’m sure she’s having a hell of a time up there with sweet Maddie x
Hope you got some sleep!
Take care of yourself…you need to be kind to yourself, you deserve it…
Thinking of you and sending love and hugs your way.
Sounds like a beautiful celebration of her life. I hope you are starting to find some moments of peace and can get some much needed rest.
The celebration sounds beautiful – but it also must be such a relief to have spoken and have it be behind you instead of something stressing you out. I know you did Jackie! proud because you are an amazing friend and talented writer who has a gift for putting hard-to-express emotions into words. I hope you got some sleep last night. Wishing you peace and happy memories of Jackie!.
Mary Ann says:
I didn’t cry at my father’s funeral but afterwards when everyone left and I was home alone the tears flowed like rivers. I think you just try to be strong to help everyone else through their pain. Jackie sounds like an amazingly caring person, I am so sad that she is gone. Her final tribute was perfect in the way that she still cared for all her friends by having a party instead of a funeral. I know the upcoming months will be hard for all of you but I hope you can find some peace in knowing that her pain is over – I hope she is dancing with the angels in her high heeled shoes.
The fact that you were actually able to stand up and speak about Jackie! is something to be so proud of and I’m sure you spoke as eloquently as you write and did her so, so proud!
((HUGS)) to you all!
I’m sure you did her proud.
Hope you were able to get some sleep.
Peace & strength to you & Jackies! Family & friends.
Beautiful view for a celebration for a beautiful person inside and out!!!! Jackie!!!!
This is totally inspiring. Marking a death with a celebration party of her life, instead of a funeral, in a beautiful place, with speeches and celebration. Congratulations on writing a speech about your memories together.
Michelle H says:
What a wonderful way to celebrate a woman so beautiful. I’m hoping sleep comes to you tonight.
Thought about y’all all day yesterday. Hope you are able to find rest.
I bet you made her proud. What a way to have people remember you. Funerals are so hard on a person when it comes to saying goodbye. I know you will miss her dearly as you keep her memories alive. I hope you can rest now knowing she is with your sweet Maddie looking over you.
I hope your healing can begin now and that you take comfort in knowing that Jackie is looking after Maddie. Peace and hugs.
Hope you post your remarks!
The last few weeks have been excruciating for you. I hope you will get some rest and be on your journey to enjoy your wonderful memories of your dear friend.
Hope that you are getting a good nights sleep. I agree with everyone above – I am sure you made Jackie proud. Take care. xo
Peace and rest. This is my prayer for you. I’m sure you were amazing.
Jackie! (or whomever) chose a beautiful spot for her celebration–I’ve been there and know the views and beauty. I’m sure you did a wonderful job speaking about Jackie! because everything you’ve ever shared about her here has been beautiful and has made me wish I had known her too…
I hope that you were able to get some rest and that you continue to do so: you need your rest–we can’t have you run down.
My thoughts, love, & prayers are with you & Mike and the Oswalds as you continue to grieve beautiful Jackie! and as you learn to live in a world where she may not be physically present but I know her spirit lives on.
Love, love, love