Sunday, 6 September 2015

Ready to come home

Funeral homes are not happy places. Darned if they don't try though.

The one we were guided to for Dominic had a TV in the lobby streaming commercials, one of which included a family handing out bottles of barbecue sauce. All smiles.

We walked in and were informed they give 90 per cent off if the deceased is a child. Plus insurance and we won't pay for the cremation. Oh and here's some free bottled water branded with the name of the funeral home.

They said his urn would be ready to pick up Sunday (today). They'd call us when it was.

We dreaded the call. But it never came. So we called them.

"I'm sorry sir but the crematorium is closed today."

A minute of curses, accusations and questions of who lied to me Friday followed. Then I hung up. And we drove to the place to get some real answers, because the woman on the phone was "new here" and really didn't understand the seriousness of the situation.

It's a good damn thing we didn't wind up with a Sunday flight. Apparently he's been cremated, but nobody delivered the ashes to the funeral home. We've been assured that will happen Monday by 12:30 p.m., in time for us to catch a 4 p.m. flight home to Calgary.

Orlando has been the best of times and the worst of times, times a thousand. We will always have that day at Disney last Monday, but right after it we also have his death.

We will always have Saturday night to contrast what happened Sunday as well. We went to dinner with Tim and Judy Scheerer, whose son Trevor has relapsed cancer and is going to Philadelphia soon for special proton radiation. I met Tim through Facebook once we knew we were coming to Orlando for a wish trip.

Like us they are doing all they can for their son. Our country's medical systems differ greatly but everyone has the same goal: cure cancer.

After dinner we went to a special ceremony (organized by the Talia's Legacy Children's Cancer Foundation) at a local lake. The lake's fountain was lit up gold in recognition of childhood cancer awareness month (September). The people we met were incredible, many having lost children of their own, all ready with hugs and kind ears to hear what we were feeling.

What we felt that night was that Dominic chose this place. And that we are thankful for the community here, but also that it's time to say goodbye and move on with our own journey.

It's time to come home. Hopefully the funeral home won't stand in our way.


  1. That sounds like a week that almost none of us could even imagine going through. It's great to hear though, that you have found a community of support while you are there. Trish looks heartbroken, understandably so. You sound to have such a good grasp already of dealing with the grief. May your support continue even more so when you return home. We all look forward to still supporting you, and hope you keep the blog going.

  2. I am so sorry to hear what you had to go through today with the funeral home. I can't imagine dealing with those issues on top of all that you're going through. I do hope everything goes smoothly tomorrow with them along with your flight home.
    I know your family only through your blog, but I grieve deeply for your little miracle-maker. I miss hearing what Dominic's been up to and how he's doing and seeing pictures of that adorable smiling little face and his cute little thumbs-up. It is very difficult to believe that he's really gone.
    More than anything, my heart aches for what you two must be going through. As parents that have just lost their precious young child, I can't imagine what your pain and grief is like. You and Trish are always in my thoughts and I don't doubt there are so many others feeling the same way and sending their strength and thoughts your way, every minute of every day.
    You will soon be home in the arms of all that love and support you. Please know that although some of us haven't met, we also extend our arms out to you. Sending big hugs, love, strength and prayers and best wishes for a safe journey home tomorrow.

  3. What a surreal moment in time. The celebration sounds like a perfect thing for you right now. The funeral home...well...sometimes communication is lacking in places. Have faith it will all work out. I can't imagine the rollercoaster that would be - stay strong.

    You will soon be home. You are's time.

    Safe to you soon.

  4. I hope they have him ready to go tomorrow and that you have a safe trip home. I am glad you met some wonderful people. Saying a prayer for Trevor. Keeping you in my prayers. Hugs.

  5. So very sorry for your loss and all the sad things you have to do to get Dominic back home again. It's frustrating dealing with all the details. I hope you got through customs without a problem, and that you are safely back home.