Clearly, this is something I should be planning for.
The day before Easter, a 90-something lady, formerly of our congregation, died; Sunday afternoon, after our three Easter services in eighteen hours, I met with her family for the first time, and Tuesday afternoon conducted the graveside service.
Last Wednesday, the wife of one of our elderly members, who has himself been the source of much consternation and many visits as he has been in four medical facilities (often far away) for the past several consecutive weeks, suffered a massive stroke; she died on Saturday. Her service will be on Wednesday. We leave for vacation on Friday, so I had already been planning to cram two weeks of work into this one very short one.
I'm not complaining. This is work I love to do. And I'm remembering my home church pastors with particular gratitude this week; our son died on a Tuesday and his service was the following Tuesday, and in between was all the celebration and hoopla of the church's opening fall week-end.
I'm also watching family dynamics with tremendous interest. (This was my favorite part of being a family lawyer. Maybe, as my daughter suggests, I SHOULD have been a psychologist. But I liked Shakespeare so much more than Skinner; I loved the language of poetry and not the language of diagnosis.)
And I'm remembering my own father who, when pastors and friends arrived for the planning session for our son's service, held forth for a solid hour on the subject of his own life losses (terrible, to be sure), and how hard I had to work to steer him back to the topic at hand so that other people did not have to spend their entire Saturday with us.
I'm tired. And it's not even 9:00 on Monday morning.