Thursday, October 30, 2008
Sarah Rosa Greenwood
I couldn't go on blogging about the mundane events of my life without acknowledging the momentous and life-changing event that occured last week in the lives of my family - the loss of this wee baby girl, Sarah Rosa Greenwood, in the 33nd week of pregnancy. She passed away peacefully before she was born, due to the mother's illness. She was the first born of my little brother Chris and his wife Deb.
Her funeral was held yesterday, and we participated by releasing white balloons with a message into the sky at the same time all of Sarah's 11 cousins, her parents and grandparents did so, in NZ and in Japan.
Here is the eulogy my brother started to read at his daughter's funeral, finished by the eldest cousin, Rachel, when he was unable to go on.
"I wasn’t prepared for what it means to be a father, despite people trying to tell me. They were right about one thing in that it is something you can’t describe until you experience it. For us though the height of that Joy is matched only by the depths of the despair we now feel.
How can I try to explain the pain of seeing our bundle of joy transformed into a tragic sadness? Instantaneously it transformed what should have been the happiest day of our lives into the darkest.
We didn’t get to look into our Daughters eyes, and she didn’t get to look upon our faces, we didn’t get to see her take her first steps or teach her to ride a bike. We didn’t get to see her fall in Love or have children of her own, our lives from now on are going to be a long list of things we didn’t get to do together.
As countless fathers have probably thought before me of their children, I think that Sarah is the single most Beautiful thing I have ever set my eyes upon. For such beauty to not be allowed to flourish to it’s potential is such a tragic thing that I don’t think that I will ever be able to comprehend that it could have come to pass.
We should, however try to look past the loss and try to be happy for the miracle of life that she was, however short.
Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.
Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message She Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.
The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.
Time may dull the pain of losing you, but you will never be forgotten, goodbye my sweetheart, know that we will love you always."