As the local undertaker, as I am called by some, I am on call 24/7. I have often said of myself that it’s not that I am unreliable, it’s that I have an unpredictable lifestyle. Since owning the funeral home, 17 years now, I have often used this as a reason/excuse not to commit myself to organizations, committees, even family and friends. How can I be counted on be at a meeting, to bring refreshments, to go to a family function or make plans for an evening out when I MIGHT HAVE TO WORK? Everyone has been understanding.
No one counts on me to be an active member of anything. I pay dues and give money. I rarely see my husband’s family that lives less than 50 miles from us. I see my sisters more often because we go on trips together, when I can count on NOT WORKING. I have only a few friends, those who are willing to make plans with me that I might have to cancel. Everyone knows that my work comes first!
When I started this blog two months ago, I was in a very dark place. I felt that I was losing my “purpose”. There are fewer deaths in our town so less families for me to care for. Those families want less of the traditional services that I provide. So I have less work.
Well, if I have less work, than what do I have? I have more TIME. So what am I going to do with that time? I can sit around and mope and say woo is me. I have no business; I have no purpose, blah, blah, blah.
Or I can make good use of this newly found, no found is not the right word, newly GIVEN time. Last week I rejoined our local co-op as a working member. I did a training session and worked a shift and it was so much fun. Today I am taking a friend to the hospital in Bennington for same day surgery. She was very hesitant to count on me but I assured her I would do it. (yes, I do have a backup plan). I have known this woman since 1976 when we were both in NYC. She actually moved to Cambridge because of me and it is high time that I start being a real friend.
I realize that I must start living life and not just have a life waiting for death. As I write this, I realize how true that is for all of us, I have just made a career of it!
I am actively making it a new purpose of mine to reconnect; to come out from behind my “I might have to work shield”; to give of myself in different ways. It is time that I live by the words I often quote, “Make every day above ground a good one”.
Thank you for reading and sharing my journey.