Cheating On Your Local Undertaker

April 3, 2012
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(Preface: If at anytime you are are utterly confused by this blog post, please skip to the bottom and read the postscript.)

*****

I know who you are.  You can’t hide it.

You simply don’t allow my charming smile to affect you.  My attempt at small talk is given the cold shoulder.  And you won’t even look into my eyes.

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You’ve already been taken.  You’ve already given your heart to another.

I understand how it is.

Maybe he buried your mother.  Maybe he buried a close friend.

And he has your heart.  You talk about him like he’s the best thing on God’s green earth … his tender touch; his compassionate eyes, the professionalism he exhibits in that suit have won your hurting heart over.  You’ll never bury with another.

It doesn’t matter that my funeral home is larger.

It doesn’t matter that I’m younger.

It doesn’t matter that my services are cheaper.

It doesn’t matter that I’m on call all night long.

You will never cheat on him … after all he’s done for you.  You’ve pledged your faithfulness to him.

I understand.

Even if I speak tenderly: “Please sign the register book.  And here’s a memorial folder.”  But you just look down.  Averting your eyes.

I know my voice is tempting you to connect with me, as you raise your eyes and whisper, “Thank you”

Suddenly, guilt envelopes your heart, as pictures of “the one” funeral director who was the last one to let you down start flashing through your mind.  “Did I just connect with him when I said, ‘Thank you’?  Did I commit an act of unfaithfulness?  Did I cheat?”

Oh, I know what I’ve done.  I sniffed you out as soon as you entered through the funeral home door.  You were afraid to like me.  You were sold out on YOUR funeral director and had all but forgotten any other funeral directors even existed.  You came to this viewing to see your friend who had just lost her father and you didn’t expect to see me.  But, when you saw me you started to wonder … your world started to open up.

I know you have a history with him.  I know he treated you well.  I could tell by the way you averted your eyes from me and spoke to me so coldly.  You’re probably from a neighboring town, close enough that you COULD, POSSIBLY leave the funeral director in your home town and come on over to me.

And I know, that this meeting won’t be enough to entrust your heart to me.  But, I can bet the next time you see me, you’ll reciprocate my smile.  And the meeting after that, you might return my small talk.

And, our meeting after that might be slightly more personal.  You might entrust me with your hardships and pain, and let my tender touch and compassionate eyes ease your pain.

I know what I’m doing.  I’m going to be your next funeral director.

*****

(Postscript: It’s funny how you can tell who’s committed to another funeral director.  Like I mentioned, they’ll often give you a cold shoulder.  The relationship between a funeral director and their families is like few business relationships because of its personal nature.  There’s a real commitment that takes place, and when a family “cheats” (takes their business to another funeral home), it often does feel like they’re personally rejecting YOU!  And, I know of a number of funeral directors who play the temptress, and try and lure our families over to their funeral home through different marketing ploys.  It’s kinda silly and kinda immature … and, it’s kinda funny.)

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Caleb Wilde

I'm a sixth generation funeral director. I have a grad degree in Missional Theology. And I like to read and write. Connect with my writing and book plans by "liking" me on facebook. And keep tabs with my blog via subscription or twitter.
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