I think today I saw the saddest sight I never wanted to see.
Southern Sister was due to deliver her baby last week, a little boy. However, there were complications and Southern Nephew was stillborn. We knew that they planned to come back home at some point but didn’t know that it would be soon. Neither of us packed for a funeral, so when the news came that it would be today, we made the necessary arrangements with the realtor and family, got what we needed, and headed to Southern Hometown.
It’s never easy to attend a funeral, but one for a child… That hurts so much more for everything in a life left undone, all the potential unrealized, all the words unsaid.
A newborn’s casket is so small. It can be carried by one person and rested on a coffee table. It can be covered by a small flower arrangement. But that very smallness makes a great impact on those who see it. Even the minister, who married both Southern Sister/Southern BIL and Southern Honey/I, cried.
I’ve now seen Southern Honey cry four times since we met just over six years ago: when we broke up, when we were going through some problems, when we got married, and today when we buried Southern Nephew. I hope not to see him cry again for a long time.
The worst was at the beginning. As I said, it takes only one person to carry a newborn’s casket. In this case it was Southern BIL, flanked by two of his close friends. It was the single saddest moment of my life so far and an image I think will always stay with me.