Obituaries, memories & moving on

I never read the obituaries in newspapers until became responsible for their placement. Even last week when I read the obituaries in Wednesday’s edition, they meant little to my young heart and mind. But last Friday when I was asked to type up my husband’s obituary, the importance became all too real.

For those of you who didn’t make the connection, the 24-vear-old Michael Wolf that appeared in Wednesday’s edition was my husband. He died on Valentine’s Day. The next morning, I found myself at my parent’s computer trying to sum up 24 years of life in an obituary of approximately 500 words.

I couldn’t think about his life. I couldn’t think about his death. I could barely think at all. But I sat down and filled the formula that we use here at the newspaper with facts about my late husband.

It wasn’t enough. It was ordinary.

“I’m a writer,” I thought to myself. “I should be able to put together an obituary to honor his life that is more than ordi-nary.” But in grief and overwhelming emotion, I couldn’t do more than ordinary.

Today, seven days past his death, I may be able to write an obituary that honors him realized that this is what most grieving relatives go through when they submit obituaries to be printed in our newspapers.

The grief is so strong inar they just put together an ordinary obituary and move on to the next decision in the long funeral arrangement process.

We get a stream of ordinary obituaries But no life is ordinary. No person is ordinary. Mike was extraordinary in many ways, both told and untold.

At the funeral service, my pastor described Mike as “a good man, always looking out for the good of others.” He was. And he often looked out for my good, even when it meant no good for himself. He had a caring heart and he put his all into everything, whether it be a football game, a surprise date or the rebuilding of a stroker engine. I could fill this column for weeks with memories of Mike, but I won’t. No amount of words will do justice to his life. But memories will.

I will honor his memories and I will live on.

I’m not asking for your pity or even a stream of sympathy cards at the office, l’m only letting you see into what’s happening in my life.

In the coming weeks, I may be a little slower than usual. I may break down in tears from time to time. And I may write some strange off-the-wall editorials that will only make sense when you realize that I am grieving.

But I’ll be here. l’II find tomorrow. I’ll move on. And I’lI treasure the memories that make a life extraordinary.

“Memory is the treasure-house of the mind.” – Thomas Fuller