My husbands’ grandmother Olive, died this week at the age of 99. She had been granted her wish not to live until her 100th birthday, perhaps also testimony to mind over matter, as apart from the frailty that comes with advanced years, she was in remarkable good health.
As a Medium, I know that she has already passed over into the spirit world and been reunited with Pauls grandfather and two sons, (all of whom preceded her to spirit a number of years ago), and she has been in touch to say that she is OK and free from the physical constraints that frustrated her in her later years of this life. So all that is left on the Earth plane is her physical remains, which will be buried in the local churchyard, next to Pauls grandfather.
One question then is why go to a funeral, when I know she is no longer ‘there’? Looking at it through the lens of a Medium it seems almost like an illogical thing to do. For me though, a funeral is part of a rite of passage, a celebration of a life lived, and a passing through to the world of spirit.
In this case it is also recognition of the challenges and character of Olives life. Born in the foothills of the Black Mountains of Wales, Olive had her share of challenges. When she met Pauls grandfather, who was over 20 years her senior and already widowed with two young boys. She was only six years older than Pauls father. She took on a ready made family, along with running the family farm and raising three more children.
She witnessed the passing of her husband, and later, her two stepsons. In her late 60s, the farm became too much for her, and she moved into a small cottage in the village of Eardisley, part of the famous black & white villages outside Hereford. She was to live there, fiercely independent, still driving her own car, very recently.
Last year, following a number of falls, practical as ever, she decided that she should move into a care home. It was the best solution for her needs, and she was well cared for there.
But it was not her home. Her physical needs were well catered for, but it was not nourishment for the soul. She was no longer free, and no longer near the wide open spaces of the countryside. She was 99 years old and didn’t want to make it to 100. It was time to go.
So we will go to the funeral to celebrate the life of a formidable lady, whose character enabled her to cope with all that life gave her, and moreover, choose the timing of her passing into spirit. She and her spirit family will also join us at the ceremony. What a privilege will be to be there, with the two worlds united in this important rite of passage.
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