We had steeled ourselves somewhat for this encounter. Never having done this, and never having expected to do this, we went in together. Hill Funeral Home in Westerville has been gentle and generous with us, and we felt appropriately welcomed as we entered the building. After we introduced ourselves (as my dad had handled everything for us previously), Mr. Hill brought out a very small, round parcel.
The size shocked me. I don't know why. Mr Hill handed my baby's remains to me, and it was then that I began to cry. Where I once cradled her in my arms, I now held her dust in my palm.
We spent only a few minutes in the funeral home and returned to the car to honestly work through our grief. We talked about getting a more appropriate urn for Julia until her remains are buried in Taylor's family plot in New Hampshire. Taylor, who is a skilled woodworking craftsman, had an idea upon seeing various wooden urns in the funeral home. "I'd like to make an urn for Julia, out of burl." Burl, he explained, is an anomaly that forms as a tree grows. It looks strange and unusual on the outside, but on the inside, the grain of burl is wondrously intricate. Passersby may think nothing of seeing a burl growth on a tree, but it is prized among craftsmen and reserved for the most beautiful elements of a piece. This seems to be a perfect metaphor for our special girl. It will take Taylor awhile to craft this piece, but I can assure you that he will create something worthy of Julia.
|Tabletop made utilizing burl|
We decided to get some donuts on the way home. We had so many doctor's appointments both before and after Julia's birth, and as often as we could, we would get ourselves a treat after our appointments to make the receipt of often bad news more bearable. Today, we decided that Julia should be part of one last outing in her honor.