Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Mom's Eulogy

This has been requested...and I wanted to log this anyway.  Its sad, its happy... and I didn't say it word for word... I think I spoke it better than it reads, but nevertheless... here it is.
Marge Fecarotta  ( September 13, 1945 - March 25, 2013 )
Thank you all for coming. My mom disliked sadness and passed that along to me, so if I see too much of it I’ll dismiss you early to the Irish pub nearby.  J

Very simply put, my mother, Margaret Fecarotta, was my hero. I’m just going to list a few of the things that made that so for me through some quick stories that I hope communicate and celebrate who she was.

The Big thing, to me at least, is that she was able, somehow, to deliver me and my sisters from an incredibly challenging childhood into a future as functioning adults with only a few weird habits. J    I won’t regale you with the difficulties of our youth, as you may not have ever realized it. My mom was steadfastly independent, and she had a great way of making things alright; of making us feel okay. For those who were with us through thick and thin, I want to take this moment to thank you for help during our childhood. 

With all the distractions of a challenging life, my mom found time to be a great parent. I remember when cable had just come into the homes. We still had the wired remote to the box. The movie Thunderbolt and Lightfoot came on.  A big Clint Eastwood film, and I was probably 10.  I begged and begged to see it. She refused, as it was inappropriate. While I cried and pitched a fit, deep down inside I knew that she cared for me. She protected us from all things that might harm us - I always felt that mom would take my side, but give me the straight story too.

She was funny and bright - We laughed at the craziest things. As a teenager I took up the habit of running into stationary objects and mocking injury, just to get a rise out of her. Our walks up to King Kullen were replete with me mashing my head against a signpost and having her shriek, and us laughing about it all the way home. 

Later in my high school career, I would sometimes skip school. Mostly I just would watch TV, but I recall one particular day mom came home when I wasn’t expecting it.   I powered down the TV, ran into the back yard, and hid behind the garage. The next thing I knew,  my dog came pounding around the corner and licked on me…and right behind him was my mother with her arms crossed.  She had deduced my presence by feeling the TV (TVs back then were made with very hot, high voltage vacuum tubes).   Clever woman.  As I got older I learned more from her as she treated me with respect.   I recall that one time on Lombardy Blvd. in Bay Shore, where SO much happened, I was throwing a baseball around with friends and one of us broke a windshield of a car.  Well, someone called and she asked me  if I was involved.  I lied, and I said no.  When she eventually discovered that I did do this ( you can’t lie to mom) she said I broke her trust.  I was devastated…but she emphasized to me the importance of truth to me,  but she didn’t scream and yell or hit.  Through me shooting my sister with a bb gun, locking them in closets, giving them indian burns, and on and on – it was always respect, intelligence and strong honest instruction – in a word, it was Love. 

My mom was a fighter and remained a fighter to the very end – I have pictures on my cell phone if you don’t believe me.  Though she was a fighter, that was not what she wanted to do. When I was a teenager I somewhat insensitively asked her, “So mom, what did you want to do with your life (as if it was over) and she turned and said, “I wanted to be a princess.”

At the time I thought that was a terrible answer. It’s very difficult to become a princess.   Yet, that answer informed me of how she saw her life…how she envisioned it with my father.  And for many years, most of my childhood and beyond, she was very happy.  Princess …no…happy…yes. 

If you would permit me to get metaphysical for a moment, I need to tell you my journey with losing mom.  It’s easy to see the body of my mother, as with my father, and wonder where the soul went.  I believe our souls are a culmination of all that we are – the best of all Marges, from the kindest kid in the courtyard to the heart of a mother making Christmas a special day ever year.  Mom is now the sum of all that was the best of Marges that live on and that is exciting.  I want to meet that soul. 

About 400 hundred years before Christ, Plato conjectured that life that we are seeing is a mere shadow on a cave wall, and that truth that lay beyond. We are prisoners of this perspective yet what we see is a shadow of the infinitely greater reality beyond.

Like Plato we all have an inkling, a sense that there is more to it than what we are. Humans aren’t just atoms.  The natural world makes us fear death, but the supernatural whispers in our ears – this is not the end.

The Bible says it better than I can in 1 Corinthians 15:55:


My mom isn’t chained to Plato’s cave any longer.  She’s been freed from the bonds that bind our imaginations, and those things that terrify us no longer affect her.  She has shed the corruptible and put on the incorruptible.

Lastly, I think about that scripture, and I see the word kingdom. My mom is in a kingdom, and if her time on earth was any indication she’s certainly running things up there.  I realize that now my mother has actually, finally, gotten the job that she wanted.  Margaret Mary Theresa O’Leary Fecarotta is finally a Princess.

Thank you for coming – and God bless you all.

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