The funeral of a baby is never easy to attend, but then imagine it’s your baby. It’s your baby’s funeral. Tuesday 3rd February 2015 I went through the ordeal of my son’s funeral. Before the ‘event’ happened we had to plan his funeral. We had luck when finding a funeral director that specialised in infant death. He was a very kind and informative man; I guess he needed to be with what his job was. He asked Tim and I how we wanted the funeral and what we wanted. And to be honest Ryker had a very simple funeral. There was no big sha boom, it was simple and bright. We had asked all those that were attending to wear bright coloured clothing as I don’t see an infants funeral to be dark and gloomy. But to be filled with joy and light, for everything they could be. Why taint something so perfect with something so dark? You wouldn’t want to kill a flower or butterfly with pesticide.
We saw Ryker before the funeral at a little funeral home; he was dressed in his finest ‘suit’. We had bought it before we had given birth so it seemed fitting that he wore something that was purchased with love. He had his little socks on and a little blue tie. I can remember him as clearly as someone standing before me, I regret not having photo’s taken of him at the funeral, because it would be the last time any of our family would see his sweet little face. The last time to cuddle, to just look, to look at the perfect little creature we made. Because that is what he was; perfect, eternal and simply lovely.
As a family; my partner Tim, mother, sister, niece, mother-in-laws, brother-in-law and a family friend we said our private goodbyes before heading to the cemetery. We had a small ceremony at the Infant’s Butterfly Garden at Karrakatta; those that attended were welcomed and supportive. They where what we needed on the day, not to be alone but to be loved by those who would. We lit a candle for Ryker, had poems read aloud and had a beautiful balloon release at the end of the ceremony. The ceremony itself was small and intimate; and I would not of changed a thing except to have my family from Queensland attended (my father and younger siblings could not attend).
I have never said this was my grief alone, I know every one of my family and friends have felt my grief in one way or another. Even if it was for a fleeting moment, they felt it. I can completely understand that they too hurt. But I am selfish. I am and will always put mine and my partner’s grief before theirs. I will not dwindle our grief to console others. As harsh as it may seem, their grief will not match our grief.
My little boy was cremated and a day later my partner and I went back to the Infant Butterfly Garden to ‘collect’ his urn. To bring our boy home for the first time. For the rest of my life I will tell you that was not the way I was meant to bring home my son. He was meant to come home in a car seat. Something they never tell you when you cremate is that they give you a certificate to basically say what is inside the little urn. Maybe they do tell you, and maybe I was too out of it when I was told. But that was one of the little shocks I got when I bought my little boy home.
Regrettably writing about Ryker’s funeral I must inform you that on the day, there was no ‘Aha’ moment, no butterfly to console me, no beam of light, I didn’t feel my son near and that there was no happily ever after. I felt relief and a weight off my shoulders. People tend to think that once the funeral has come and gone that everything will go back to normal. It will for everyone else, but unluckily it won’t for us.