Maybe this is not a really cheerful post, as this post reflect what I felt. But I got many lesson for this session. This post will talk a lot about death and graveyard, so if you don’t feel like it, please skip and don’t read it. But if you still want to continue, well then, let’s move on.
Not even a month after my grandmother’s relatives from my dad’s bloodline is deceased, now my grandfather’s relatives from my mother’s bloodline is following at May 10, 2011, at age 85. Unlike the previous funeral, this time, my family had to take care of the funeral problem because she is not married, she was living in my home, and she’s actually my late grandfather’s little sister, the last surviving member of the “Tan” siblings. My sister was the one who very close to her. I said “was”, because she’s now living in foreign country. I’m not that close to her, but I do have some random talking with her, and even buy her some of her favorite breads.
It’s at 8 o’clock in the night that my mom was going to change her diaper. She’s usually change her diaper at 10, but today she suddenly changed it at 8. And suddenly I heard an unusual exclamation tone, “Honeyyyyy! Grandma Tate is gone!” Tate is our nickname for her. For the sake of simpleness, let’s call her that from now on. It’s very weird, because my housekeeping was feed her at 6, and she’s still fine. But I guess that’s the best for her. She’s been tortured long enough in her condition. Now she’s in better place.
But now the problem is this: my family, helped with my mom’s siblings, has to took care of the funeral. I follow them around the town, and see what they’re doing. Bringing boxes of things and picking the right coffin from hundreds of choice wasn’t a very easy things at Ario, the funeral service, especially when I’m in flu like this. It’s ok. But what’s not ok is when I read the bill that we have to pay. Shut up! It’s nearly 10m in rupiahs (approximately $1,200)! And to think that we have already pick the affordable plan ones. I’m still not talking about the price of the graveyard site.
Then I get curious, and get into the backyard of the Ario, where the coffins for sell are located. I asked people there, how much this, that, those coffin priced. And the answer was very surprising: the coffin price ranged from a few millions to some hundreds million of rupiahs (that’s around $70,000!). I then think, how expensive a death can be! And to think that after someone is dead, all of their problem is gone. The problem is still there, and bigger. Just there are other persons who have to take care of that problems.
I’m not trying to complaining about the price of the coffin for grandma Tate. But I just shocked about how expensive a death can be. Human race is really a ridiculous species. They live a very expensive life, and that would be topped with also an expensive death. Humans have to pay a price only to be able to dead properly! I just think that it’s kind of funny thing, right? Really, what kind of culture we have been developed into?
Anyway, I was there when my parents see the location of the going-to-be burial site of grandma Tate at Keputih Graveyard, Surabaya. My dad was talking to the grave digger, and my mom with her sibling was trying to located their father’s graveyard. Having nothing to do, I walk around the graveyards to look around. There I found some interesting graveyards.
What’s interesting about this graveyard? First, I thought about her name. Her name was really special, because all graveyard around her was using an old styled name, a name that sounds like a hundred years ago, like Sutjipto Mangoenkoesoemo or something. But her name sounds pretty familiar to my ears. Maybe she’s from around my generation. Wait a minute. If her name is familiar, when was she born? 1983? Hey, that’s exactly my birth year! September 20? That’s almost exactly my birth day and month too! And when was the day of she deceased? March 2011? Is it just very recently? Then when she died, she’s just as old as I am!
I often thinking that I’m still young, and I still have so long journey ahead to accomplish. But now here I’m, presented with a fresh graveyard that fit my age. It’s like a great slap in my face that I can really die everytime God wanted me to, and the question arise again: am I really ready to leave this world, with so many unfinished responsibility over my shoulders? There’s only a fine line between life and death, and inside every our breath, there’s always risk that our breath can fail. But it didn’t, for now. And that means I have to work faster to finished all my responsibilities that God currently put over my shoulders, and live holier and more sincere day by day, so that I can face Him without ashamed if He called me at anytime.
At the first time, I found this graveyard interesting because I catch that this person born at May 15, and died at May 15. Wow, what a rare timing selection to die. Is he really choose a same day to die, or what? But after I realized that it also in the same year, then I immediately know what really happened. And this boy just never pass his one day old in this earth.
I drives me into thought that many of us never use time wisely. We often wasted our time too much with unproductive activities, not knowing that there’s many person out there who didn’t have enough time to even taste one full day on earth. I suddenly remember what my pastor said long time ago:
You wasted your fine hands to hurt other people, while there are many people who doesn’t even have an arm that longed to do God’s will with his inexistent arm. You wasted your fine eyes to watch unproductive things like porn, while there are many people who doesn’t even have an eye that longed to see the beauty of God’s creation. Don’t make God has to take your hands and eyes and gives that to the people who wouldn’t waste it and needs it more!
And here’s the final graveyard. There’s nothing wrong with this graveyard, except that I felt very sorry for the people who was neglected when they was alive, but crowned like a king after they’ve died. I appreciate the way they decor the graveyard, but that would be even more appreciated if some act of love was given to the person when the person in spoken is still alive. This is just a thought for myself, not a judgement for them. I never know them, or the deceased one.
Anyway, I’ve just receive a tweet that said: One rose that you give to your mother is more valuable than one thousand of rose that you put it on her graveyard later.
And that’s what makes our blog title today. We all are running an expensive life, and also waiting for an expensive death in the future. But what’s even more tragic is that many people don’t mind to spend some thousand bucks to buy a graveyard for his son, but doesn’t feel right to buy his son a simple toys as an appreciation for his good marks, or even a good hug, when he was still alive.
I hope we don’t lose perspective, and appreciate what and who we have now, before we finally lose it. And even ten thousand bucks cannot buy five more minutes reuniting with someone we love, or even to just say that we love them.