My father finally passed Wednesday night. We had the memorial service yesterday. This has been a hard time for me, and it was even harder for him -- there was a lot of suffering that I thought no one should have to go through. I know he was more than ready to go.
The timing turned out to be good for family and friends to make it in to town for the memorial yesterday. A lot of kids have today as a holiday from school, so people were able to make it from out of town.
We held the service in a hall in a local park instead of doing anything at a funeral home. He is being cremated and it wasn't important to us to have his ashes there -- I feel like it would be the same as bringing a pair of old socks -- he isn't in those ashes any more than he is in his clothes.
We spent a lot of time going through pictures and I forgot how healthy he had seemed for most of his life. He did pretty well until the last ten years, until things started to gradually go downhill. He managed his diabetes just by taking his meds and staying active for almost thirty years.
It is hard to say goodbye but he isn't in pain anymore, and I'm happy about that.