This morning before I even got out of bed I see a horrid text from BrettCajun and his boyfriend wishing me a Happy Valentine’s Day. I threw up in bed when I saw their pic:
Thankfully there’s only about 3 1/2 hours left of this holiday.

In other news, grievin’ and processin’ as you might imagine. It’s weird, and sad. Thinking back on the funeral weekend, there’s not much to remember – a lot of it was haze. When you’re working to coordinate a funeral with your two brothers you just put your head down and organize. But ironically it doesn’t leave a lot of time for self-processing. But here are some things I learned:

  • Old emotional issues you long thought buried bubble up like hot lava. Sibling issues, longtime grief from previous deaths, and even unexpected surprise issues. Good times.
  • In the south, everyone bakes stuff for the grieving family. Not so much in the north, but we got some hot dish and lefse delivered. It helps a lot when you just don’t feel like cooking.
  • Funerals, markers and urns are expensive! When you only have a week to organize a funeral, you don’t have a lot of time to haggle – and don’t feel like it either. Gifts from family and friends helped, and so does life insurance of course.
  • It was surprising which relatives and friends stepped up. The Irish side of the family really loves a funeral, the Scandinavians not so much.
  • The memorial service was exhausting. As a close family member of the deceased you have to greet everyone and chat, which doesn’t leave a lot of time to process.

I may get a car out of it all – no one else wants mom’s car, and it’s a Subaru Forester, which I’ve always liked. But then again cashing it in could help relieve the debt I’ve accumulated in the past 3 years of unstable job situations. On the other hand, getting out of DC more often to hike or be outdoors would be good too. Still thinking about that…

In better news, I accepted a job offer last week, and start on Tuesday. It’s content management stuff for international agriculture development. Being off work was sort of convenient as I was back home in Wisconsin for so long, but it’ll be good to be back to work after being unemployed since before Christmas. And income!


  1. brettcajun says:

    Hey, I sent you pics of a happy couple on Valentine’s Day so you could live vicariously thru our happiness as a couple and one day change your wicked ways and find some poor soul to call “HusBear”. Just convince them that taking you on is a sure fire golden ticket to heaven!

    Seriously, congrats on the new job. Carport loving may be a thing of the past for you! Good luck.


    Brett & Matt

  2. napoleonva says:

    Barf on Brett. Congrats on the new job.

  3. Mari InShaw says:

    Cars are expensive things.
    The Help came into the marriage with a car, I’d been happily living nearly 2 decades without one. So a bit over $1.2K a year for insurance, then there is title, and until recently $100 a month for gas. During the non-snowy months there is the fun of moving the car for street cleaning. And where you live parking isn’t all over. You live too close to the stuff SUV driving suburbanites want.
    Sell the car, unless you have to use it to get to work. Cars are the gateway drug to moving to Maryland or Virginia. As Nancy Reagan would say, “Just say no.”
    You can always rent a car to get out of town. Our car is getting old enough that we no longer trust it beyond 50 miles out, and so we’ve taken to renting.
    After you’ve kept your new job for 2 years and feel stable, maybe get yourself a car. Used. For cash.
    Just say no to car ownership.

  4. Jim says:

    Good to hear re the job, it’s about time the universe gave you a break. Something interesting and that cold, hard cash!

    Funerals can temporarily re-sharpen edges dulled long before. As you said processin’ processin’. Hang in there.

  5. Blobby says:

    Congrats on the job. You deserve it. As for the funeral stuff – yeah, it’s an odd business and haggling isn’t really too much of an option. Knowing my father was in Hospice, it gave me a few weeks to arrange things and “shop around” – still, it’s no fun. I think the people taking your time is to help ease into the processing of things. It’s overwhelming, just in another fashion.

  6. NIFP says:

    OTOH, a car might be essential if you decide to finally wash your hands of Disappointment City.

  7. FearsomeBeard says:

    Late to the party here but want to say congrats on the job and making it through all of the funeral “stuff”, it ain’t easy.