Random thoughts on the past fortnight.

Sophia Jacyszyn Funeral Brochure

So, I know this is essentially a book blog, but I feel like I need to say a few things about my grandmother’s life and her funeral. I honestly believe a lot of what influences my reading and reviewing comes from my life involving my Ukrainian family: me, my grandmother, my mother and her sisters. I’m hyper-critical of books that don’t treat women well, and that’s because my personal experiences of female relationships have been so important to me.

The funeral was humbling. This little Ukrainian woman so many people were ashamed of for not being “Australian enough” (a stupid, woggy immigrant!), and in the end…

We had THREE priests doing her funeral. We had our parish priest, but we also had two others who asked if they could be part of it. One from interstate (Sydney), and one who was Orthodox (we’re Catholic). That a man who wasn’t even part of the same religion respected her enough to want to participate in her funeral is so amazing. Two of them actually cried during the service.

Funeral Sophia Jacyszyn Ukrainian Catholic Church 12th May 2015

Three priests and my father…

People flew in from all over the place so they could get up and speak. We had speeches from international leaders of a number of organisations. We had people from the embassy attend. My father (her son-in-law) did the English eulogy, and he said he kept practicing it so he wouldn’t cry (watching him rehearsing in the lounge room before we left for the church was very sad). But he made us all cry!

I thought we were cried out by then. A fortnight of two hours’ sleep a night, the first week in a cafeteria chair in the hospital ward. One meal a day at most (sometimes a few biscuits {crackers} and nothing more). Dragging yourself out of bed so you could contact the funeral director or continue scanning pictures. I was there when she died, and spent an hour with her at the private viewing, and by the time we got to the funeral on Tuesday I was so exhausted… I actually woke up at dawn at the end (after going to bed at 5am), hurried down the hallway, and had to ask someone if I was needed somewhere because I was so confused by that point, and then was SO relieved I could go back to bed.

I did A LOT of the organisation for the funeral, but I had NO idea my little, humble grandmother would have a funeral that turned out to practically be a celebrity event!

I’m so glad for her.

I know that people go through this all the time. However, it’s really hard to explain the connection I had with Baba, and the impact her death will have.

However, I also think that it’s good we’ve done all the “official” things. Because now I feel like I can get back to reading, and eating(!) and sleeping(!), and all of that. I can think about her without worrying about everyone else in the community. It’s stupid, but I was starting to get annoyed all these dignitaries were acting like they owned her. She’s MINE!!

I wrote a post about dreams recently, and now I’m having the most bizarre, disturbing dreams about my grandmother coming back to life. Not long before she died, she started having weird dreams. Firstly, she was dreaming about loud knocking on the door, and her dead husband calling for her. And then she started dreaming about everyone having a party, waiting for her – a dream she had over and over.

I don’t believe in many religious or supernatural things. But something happens when you die. I’ve seen it happen more than once in the past few years. I’ve seen the moment a spirit goes. I just don’t know what to make of it yet.

Temporarily disabling comments on a couple of posts so I can catch up with all my blogs and social media accounts!

2 thoughts on “Random thoughts on the past fortnight.

  1. Pingback: The Week: 11th – 17th May | Sonya's Stuff

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