21
   

Why Wait Until They're Dead?

 
 
Roberta
 
Reply Thu 23 Jun, 2011 10:31 pm
When Bob died, people wrote their heartfelt feelings on the thread that Diane started. When Noddy, Timber, and Cav died, the same kind of thing happened. People wrote warm, caring, and loving things about how they felt about these people.

A normal and natural reaction, I think.

I think it might have been even better if Bob had gotten to see all those wonderful things we had to say. Granted, he may have been uncomfortable and made remarks about poopity heads. But he would have known how we felt.

I suspect that many of us made our feelings known. And I suspect that many of us didn't. Bob knew how I felt. But did Timber and Noddy? No, they didn't.

It wouldn't hoit to let people know how we feel, if the situation presents itself.

If I get closer to dying than I already am, I intend to show up here and let you all know. I'm hopeful that if you have something to say about how you feel about me (good or bad), you say it before I croak.

Do any of you agree with me? Or should we leave the obituaries for the dead?

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Type: Question • Score: 21 • Views: 4,549 • Replies: 48

 
hamburgboy
 
  5  
Reply Thu 23 Jun, 2011 10:36 pm
@Roberta,
a fellow i worked with had a sign on his desk :

Quote:
DON'T PRAISE ME AT MY GRAVE ,
I CAN'T HEAR YOU !!!


Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Thu 23 Jun, 2011 11:10 pm
@hamburgboy,
Gotta agree with the sign, Hamburgboy. Thanks for that.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  8  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 04:50 am
I have a built-in reluctance to express feelings of affection in most situations. Plus, many objects of my affection either misread my intentions or else feel uncomfortable at the attention and reject my overtures. That said, I had a very good relation with Bob, Noddy, Joanne Dorel and Cav. Timber I had warmed up to in his last couple of years and I hope he felt friendly to me. I think he did. I don't want to start a list of a2k persons I love and respect on this thread, because my mind has a way of skipping important information and I would invariably leave some out. Perhaps I could take your advice, but slip said declarations in on the odd occasion. But let me declare my admiration and affection for you, Roberta. I don't know if I could cope with your health problems, as you maintain a job and do all else to hold your life together. Long may you hold up your banner, being an example to the rest of us mere mortals.
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 05:28 am
@edgarblythe,
edgar, I sense that many people share your reluctance to be open about feelings. I can respect that.

I admit that my perspective on this is from the side of the deceased. Wouldn't thay have wanted to know? To hear?

Thanks for your kind words, kid. And right back atcha.

Moi? An example? The Queen of Kvetch. If you say so. I have the greatest respect for you opinion.
JPB
 
  4  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 05:37 am
@Roberta,
Oh, but Roberta, your kvetching is a talent that few possess. I don't know anyone else who can kvetch like you can and not seem bitchy. It's a joy to read and oftentimes brings a smile to my face even though the substance of the kvetch makes me sad/mad on your behalf.
0 Replies
 
PUNKEY
 
  2  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 06:25 am
Your are right: feelings should be expressed during one's lifetime. But that doesn't happen.

Funerals are for the left-behind living, not the dead.
Expressions of those feelings, memories, etc. comfort the family and close friends.

The following time is even more important. Call or write the widow or child left behind. Send a "thinking of you" note.

I found that after 5 months, no one cares. They are on with their own life.
Roberta
 
  5  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 06:54 am
@PUNKEY,
JPB, I don't seem bitchy! I'm doing something wrong. Oh, the ignominy.

Punkey, You're right. It doesn't happen, and I'm suggesting that it should. Perhaps the discomfort that people feel might be somewhat lessened by not being face-to-face with people here.

I think about Bob. I truly believe that it would have meant a lot to him to hear what people had to say. I'm glad that I got to say to him what I wanted to say, but the fact is that he initiated the conversation.

Yes, funerals are for the survivors. A way of saying good-bye. A kind of closure. But I'm talking about the time before the person is dead. The person is still alive. I believe that the person would benefit from knowing what people think, as long as it's not all horrible.

I understand your concern for the survivors, especially as time goes by. But I'm talking about the pre-dead person. It's hard enough knowing you're dying. Wouldn't knowing how people feel ease the way a bit?
0 Replies
 
Izzie
 
  3  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 07:07 am
@Roberta,
Roberta wrote:

Do any of you agree with me?


Yes!

There are so many folk taken away from you at short or no notice or it's just too late. Just like that, they're gone. Folk still may be alive - but sometimes you may never get the chance to tell them again, for various reasons - that's one of the saddest things I live with.

I tell those whom I love and who I'm able to talk to/write to, that I love them - every day if possible and even those who I don't speak to each day or see regularly, they know. I know that any minute they can die or be gone from my life. Or vice versa. They know, I know.

It doesn't ever just roll off the tongue without meaning - it's true, it's genuine, it's from the heart.

There are so many folk whom I have huge admiration and respect for and who impact my life in some way, folk whom I may never meet in person and may not even regulary converse with - but I tell them what they mean to me and I hope that they believe and know it. Some may think expressing your feelings is inappropriate ... but hey, life really is too short and you never know what's around the corner. For some, it's uncomfortable to express feelings - I don't think there can be a right or wrong. As much as I find it easy to express some things, I completely understand that this is such an individual thing and wouldn't ever expect anyone to do the same back, just because I've said something.


There are so many people who become special in your life or play a part in your life - for me it's a case of ...why not tell them so? Oftentimes, things happen and feelings change - but that doesn't detract from when you felt close to people, that was then - so you've nothing to lose really. If folk change or feelings change - well, then you usually tell them that too.

When Charlie got cancer - hundreds of folk rallied around her, people she worked with, used to work with, people who were really casual acquaintances, neighbours, people who loved her - she never knew how many people cared for her or the new friendships she would make with people who helped her through the months... she found out when she was diagnosed with something that was life threatening - and believes that all their love and good wishes helped her through to beat the "C". One thing she kept saying was "if I had just died from anything (like getting run over or whatever) I would never have known how x, x, or x had felt about me - how blessed am I to know before I died?" - and she was, because so many people wanted her to know, told her so and continue to tell her so. Some of those expressions of course have fallen away - but i think that's human nature too - a lot of folk come together in a crisis - some fall away - but some do stay around after. Then you know it's real and genuine.


So yes, I think expressing your feelings about folk before they're gone, as long as it doesn't make them reallllllly uncomfortable, which would kinda defeat the purpose, then it's a good thing.

Course, I would say that a? Gushy rambling little lass that I be.

Love you Boida!

0 Replies
 
Letty
 
  4  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 11:09 am
@Roberta,
When my son died we celebrated his life, not his death. I totally agree with you. Timberlanko and I PMed as did Joanne Dorel and I. She showed us JLNobody's paintings, too. Cavfancier and I had great exchanges. Upon first encounter, I thought he was talking about caviar. Some folks were always getting Noddy and I confused which we both considered a compliment.

Of course we are shaken when death takes them from us. That is natural.

Roberta
 
  4  
Reply Fri 24 Jun, 2011 05:03 pm
@Letty,
Izzie querida, Thanks for the post and your sharing your thoughts and feelings on this. I appreciate knowing how Charlie was affected by people's reactions to her illness. It reminded me of how I was affected when I was lying in the hospital after my brain had been operated on. My friend arrived with a printout of all the comments people made here on my Surgery Again thread. It meant the world to me. Lifted my spirits.

Love you too, kid.

Letty, You were fortunate to have had a relationship with Timber, Joanne and Cav. I knew them only from the boards here. Developed very strong impressions of these people. I wish I had said something. I had the pleasure of meeting Noddy. Hey, Noddy, I'm hanging onto my dominion as best I can.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 01:17 am
@Roberta,
I have been thinking about this since I read your post last night, Roberta.

Quote:
If I get closer to dying than I already am, I intend to show up here and let you all know. I'm hopeful that if you have something to say about how you feel about me (good or bad), you say it before I croak.

What can I say?
I would respect your decision to let everyone know, without a doubt. And I would be grief-stricken to hear your news. I am certain about that.

But there may be others in a similar position who would prefer not to share such information, for their own personal reasons. I would respect that, too. They are under no obligation to pass on such information if they'd rather not do that.

Quote:
Do any of you agree with me? Or should we leave the obituaries for the dead?

Personally, I'd find it very difficult, almost impossible, to write an online "obituary" for an A2K member who is alive & posting.

Don't misunderstand. I care a great deal for a number of members here who have been present & communicating with me & others for years now. I care a great deal about you. I hope you know that, Roberta.

The loss of those members who I know well & care a great deal about would affect me very deeply ... as Bob & Cav's deaths certainly did.
I am still adjusting to Bob's death. I still expect a private message anytime, or to see a post from him appear on any number of threads I know he'd be interested in. I still receive a shock when I see the title of Diane's thread about Bob's death. I miss him terribly. I also missed the huge gap that Cav's death left. It took me a long, long time to adjust to his permanent absence.

But my response to prior knowledge of the death of any member I really care about here is a very private thing to me.
Luckily, in Bob's case, I was able to talk to him about it by private messaging. We talked quite a bit in private, much more so than online. I'm really grateful for that.
And in Cav's case, well I was shattered, as many of us were. Because, even though we all knew he was extremely ill, his death was still a huge shock. He was so ill he stopped posting.

I would have loved the opportunity to have said goodbye properly to Cav.
We had PM-ed fairly regularly & shared all sorts of thoughts, but I wasn't able to say all the things I would have liked to have said in the end. But you know, I think he knew he was loved here. Because he definitely was.

What am I trying to say in this muddled post, Roberta?
I think I am never going to share my deepest feelings for any member I care a great deal about on a public forum.
To me, those thoughts are private, between me & the person I hold a strong affection & regard for.
If I knew in advance that someone I knew & cared about a great deal was dying, I would share my thoughts & feelings with them privately. I could speak much more openly with them that way.

But, of course, everyone is different. This is just me.




Roberta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 02:10 am
@msolga,
olga, Some people might feel more comfortable saying things in a public forum. Others might feel more comfortable saying things privately. And still others might feel more comfortable not saying anything at all.

The purpose of this thread was to suggest that we let people know how we feel about them before it's too late.

I respect your feelings and your desire not to say things publicly. And I appreciate your thoughtful response.
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 08:21 am
@Roberta,
Yes, that makes sense, Roberta.
To make their feelings known in whatever way people feel most comfortable about doing so. Whatever seems most the most appropriate way for each individual.
I mistakenly thought you meant public (online) acknowledgments.
0 Replies
 
shewolfnm
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 08:29 am
@Roberta,
Roberta wrote:


Do any of you agree with me? Or should we leave the obituaries for the dead?




its a line repeated over and over... " i wish I would'a, could'a, should'a" when someone dies. And it falls in line with the " always do exactly as you have done and you will always get exactly what you have gotten from it'

have I learned that lesson? Nope .
I think we too often take life for granted as if we will always have someone ( doctor or otherwise) hanging over us giving us a time line before the actual moment so we KNOW to prepare. Death does not always work that way and catches people by surprise every time... yet.. deep down we all know we are not immortal.

Berta.. your a really awesome gal. I gotta see you again Smile
Im working my way up there that I can promise.
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 08:53 am
@shewolfnm,
Right, Olga, my concern is that the person knows how we feel. How and where we choose to deliver the message is a matter of personal preference. I believe that Bob knew how many people felt. He was in contact with lots of folks. I also believe that he didn't know how many people felt, and it pains me because I think it would have been beneficial to him.

Wolfie, Yeah, the couldas, wouldas, and shouldas are a colossal pain in the ass. I was hoping that this thread might eliminate some regrets. Maybe it will; maybe it won't.

You're coming back to Noo Yawk! Good. I wasn't finished tawking to you. And I wanted to hear more of what you had to say.
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 09:31 am
@Roberta,
There is the notion of how we perceive our relationship as compared to how it actually is in the real world. You make a lot of great points Roberta. I'm glad you addressed them here as they do need to be brought up.

Well we (the royal we here of course) introverts all need to break out of our comfort zones to some degree.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  3  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 02:40 pm
@Roberta,
It's time to express some appreciation then; everything I know about schlepping, I learned right here on a2k.

You know who you are.
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 03:58 pm
@roger,
tsar, How we perceive our relationships as compared to reality is similar to how we perceive ourselves with respect to how others perceive us. There's rarely a clear picture. A picture not colored by past experience, neuroses, insecurities, and life.

It's not just the introverts that need to break out of their comfort zones. Extroverts (I have to include myself in that group to a degree) need to get past what's holding us back.

Why is saying how we feel so damned hard?

Roger, You don't have to know about schlepping to be a schlepper or to schlep. But I'm proud to think that I contributed to your knowledge. Knowledge is power. And IMO, the more you know, the more you are.

Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jun, 2011 08:37 pm
@Roberta,
Roberta wrote:
Why is saying how we feel so damned hard?



The simplest answer to that one part piece is that expressing a feeling can be exceptionally difficult, especially difficult if their isn't a return of the same feeling.

My dislike of making threads dedicated towards any living person, is that it can generate sadness in others, those what don't get a special thread. I've seen it on a few boards, even here we see it with birthdays, some get many reviews some get very few. (and I've been guilty, responding only in a few birthday threads, being too lazy or indifferent to respond to others)How does that play with the person...even a long time member... that sees very little response towards them, even though they've never had a run in with any members on the board?

It may seem cold to not want a string of syrupy threads but I think it's best not to create a two tier community.

As to actual member feelings towards each other, I've seen it regularly here within threads when a member makes a personal comment (positive at times negative at others comment) directly to another. To me the interaction in that way is more meaningful while a person lives and is the best proof of how others feel. As said, a separate thread can be weird, can even bring in an air of fake, as members might see, "I adore <_____________>" or "A tribute to <_________>" and then fill in pleasantries which they never would have otherwise done, and possible even in contradiction to their usual postings/interactions with the thread honoree.

When a person is no longer with us, I see a specialized thread towards/about/posthumously for them to be a written memorial and even a stroll down memory lane.

I would possibly say more but clearly am starting to not make sense to myself. Any rate, just my views, nothing more.
 

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