Monday, July 27, 2020

Boyfriends

I had a lot of boyfriends in elementary school. You weren't "cool" if you weren't "going" with someone.  Chasing each other on the playground and writing notes to each other was basically the extent of the relationship. We dared not hold hands or exchange kisses for fear of cooties. Boys and girls weren't supposed to like each other, after all. 

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I remember a few, and I'll just give their initials so they won't die of embarrassment if by some weird chance they were to read this. I remember liking a boy in preschool who rode on the bus with me, all giggles and bouncing in the back seat from bumps in the road. That's really all I remember about him, except in later grades we never really talked to each other. Our interests diverged, I suppose, as did our group of friends. MD played tuba in the band as I recall, and I played flute. In high school he became a goat-roper (cowboy) while I was just a nerd.

My first (or maybe second) grade boyfriend was actually in my swimming class in the summer. It's hard to recall anything except that we chased each other on the playground during recess. I don't think that relationship lasted very long. Go figure. Two seven-year-olds.  He did come by my workplace while I was in college and ask me if I was interested in sharing an apartment! There was also another boy that pestered me so much everyone thought he was my boyfriend but he wasn't.  He was pretty much the class goof-off.  Sadly, JW passed away at a young age.

The next beau I recall is DC in fourth grade. I do remember writing notes with him, notes that consisted of "Do you like me? Check yes or no." If he checked yes, then you were going together. He sat behind me in class and was a Cub Scout. He wore the cool blue shirt and gold scarf to school one day a week. I seem to remember he smiled a lot. Probably still does.  I do know he is still married to his high school sweetheart and has a beautiful family.

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That's pretty much it. I guess there really weren't a lot. I don't recall any boyfriends in fifth or sixth grade. My parents never had to worry about setting a dating age for me, because no one ever asked me until I was a junior in high school. That's me, number one nerd. I was too smart for boys to like me. 

That's okay, though. I wound up with the best of the bunch.  JC and I have been together over 40 years, and I don't have to chase him around the playground.

How about you?  Did you have boyfriends or girlfriends in elementary school?

Stay safe and well.

XOXO

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Funerals are Weird

Maybe no one has dared to utter those words, at least in print or publicly, but there they are.  Don't you agree?  Here in the U.S., we have certain customs we follow when someone dies.  I'm sure they all, like Christmas traditions, have their origins and seem reasonable to most, but nowadays you have to wonder.  Should the usual traditions and customs be followed during a pandemic?

Because they're not.  Many are not holding traditional funerals; many are holding memorial services, and many times the service is held weeks or even months after the death.  Fewer people are attending funeral services these days, for fear of catching or spreading the coronavirus, and those who do attend wear masks.

My father-in-law recently passed away, and my mother-in-law honored his wishes by having him cremated, but she decided at the last minute to donate his body to science, in hopes that research into dementia like his could help someone in the future.  An honorable and noble decision, in my opinion.  She filled out the proper paperwork, the university picked up the remains, and ashes may be returned to her when the work at the university medical school is complete.  

So there was no need for a casket, no need for viewing, no need for graveside service, no need for interment.   Most of the immediate family attended the simple memorial service with a handful of friends and relatives, and there were two speakers and a couple of songs, and the service was over.

Family received the guests and then convened at my mother-in-law's home where we visited for awhile and then left.  It was odd.  No food was brought to the house, no food was served after the service, and no flowers were delivered.

Still, I believe my father-in-law was honored, and my mother-in-law was provided closure after months and months of caregiving.  This pared-down version of a funeral seemed to make more sense to me.  Maybe the traditions of visitation, viewing the body in a casket, and going to the cemetery help to provide closure for many, but this simple memorial service was a good substitute.  

Goodbye, Jerry. We love you. May you rest in peace with God.


Have you attended a funeral or memorial service during the pandemic?  Please share your experience.  I would love to hear about it.

XOXO