Sit down. We need to talk

~Words at my dads Funeral~

Hi my name is Heather for anyone I haven’t met. I’m Gerards daughter and was gifted with a lovely mini me for the past decade- her name is Sienna and my dads one true love. On behalf of his girls, I’d like to thank you all for being here.

I’m supposed to start with memories and how great my dad is but we are all familiar with what an incredible man he is, a gentlemen in every sense of the word and what a light he brought into every room.

Instead, really hoping this is the last chance I’ll have to talk in front of a room full of grieving people- I’d like to touch on loss and what I think would help us all going forward and how we can incorporate my dad into our future.

Each person in this room is either affected directly or indirectly by this great loss. And the more we speak on the reality of grief, the easier it becomes. The more we tell the truth. How hard this is, how hard it is to be alive. To love and to lose, the easier life becomes. And we are most useful to each other when we find ways to keep our hearts open amongst the nightmare, not to lose sight of love amongst the wreckage.

If we’re going to live here, if we’re going to get through this together we need to be more comfortable with pain. Loss gets integrated, not overcome. Your heart and your mind will carve out a new path amid this weirdly new future. A future we didn’t want, but is here nonetheless.

In saying that, my dad was stripped from tomorrow but his vibrant soul lives on. In me, my baby and everyone else who was touched by his presence.

With the knowledge of how dad would want us all to behave I’ll share with you a couple of things I’ll personally be doing and I hope you can take some with you today.

I’ll be ordering a lot more xxxx golds.

On the days where it’s hard to get out of bed, I’ll get up, do my hair and spray perfume because dad always looked amazing and I have no reason to appear like I’ve been dragged from a hedge when the man was sick and was still the best dressed in a room. To all the gentlemen who have a suit gathering dust that only make appearances at weddings and funerals. Maybe throw it on to grab some milk. Live the G way.

I’ll continue singing in hopes to lift the spirits in a room, just like he did. And best believe I’ll be the first one on the dance floor.

I’ll use his jokes and sayings.

I’ll have great work ethic. Because I was shown that way.

When possible I’ll take the long way, just for the journey.

I’ll continue to aim up to his impeccable social skills.

I’ll be kind and respectful

I’ll love with everything I have left.

And when there’s moments when I struggle doing any of that. That’s okay too.

Grief hits us all in different ways and we can only do what we can. But I’ll tell you this now, where possible get up and carry on. For no other reason then- HE WOULD WANT US TO! And for a man who radiated positivity, it would be an injustice not to at least try.

When dad and I were in the ambulance on the way to hospital, we had the paramedic play his favourite songs. We held hands and sang the whole way. He was on the way to pallative care and still managed to sing and tell the paramedics that it was the best Uber drive he’s ever had and he’ll give them 5 stars. Now If that doesn’t inspire you all to be better people, I honestly don’t know what will.

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