Kids at a Funeral

This is winding back the time when Crappy Boy was not yet two…

We have a funeral to attend. Friend of the family. Of course this means that all of our babysitters will be there so the only way for us to come is if we bring Crappy Boy.

I really don’t want to bring him so I offer to stay home. Let Crappy Papa go alone. A funeral is no place for an eighteen-month-old.

But as usual, the rest of the family talks me into it. It will be fine! Everyone loves to see babies at funerals, it makes them happy! If he gets loud you can step out! Everyone will understand!

I bring a whale of a bag. I have books and markers and stickers and toys and snacks and diapers and clothes stuffed in its belly.

We sit down in the very last row by the doors. He is happily and quietly looking at picture books.

funeral-1

The ceremony starts, “Friends and family, we are gathered here today…”

And all is well. For a moment, I think this will actually be okay.

Then suddenly, the pipe organ starts up. It is really loud.

Crappy Boy looks up from his book with wide eyes.

Immediately after the song ends they say, “And now may we have a moment of silence…”

And right then, right then when the entire room is completely silent, Crappy Boy starts CLAPPING for the music and yells:

funeral

(He must have thought it rude that nobody else appreciated the music. He was being encouraging to the pipe organ player!) 

Amidst some shocked turned heads (and thankfully a few giggles) I snuck us out of there as fast as possible. For the next hour we busied ourselves with snacks and songs on a bench near Al Jolson’s monument. (The songs came about after Crappy Boy asked me about the Al Jolson statue and who he was.) It was a beautiful day with birds and flowers everywhere.

What started as complete embarrassment is now a lovely, lovely memory. One of my magical moment memories even.

It always works that way, doesn’t it?

Got one to share?

 

 

———–

By the way, the family friend who died would have loved this story. So it’s all good. 

 

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246 Responses to Kids at a Funeral

  1. Vanessa says:

    This year we took our then-18 month-old daughter to the funeral of a good friend, Esperanza, who died with hardly any warning. Grace was OK for most of the service, we did the in-and-out thing during the prayers and came back in for the slideshow. Grace watched intently at pictures of Esperanza in the 1950s through the ’80s, which she didn’t recognize, but when the recent ones came up she yelled out, “Espy! Espy!” and it really did make everyone happy.

  2. amanda says:

    this is great! lol at my nanas funeral my son was almost 3 and at the moment of silence part he started singing “Spiderpig” from the simpsons movie. had the whole church in an uproar of laughter including the organ player. definately broke the silence and the mood of the event.

    • amanda says:

      I should also say that when they first carried her casket in the church were sitting in the pew, my son looked around put his hands on his hips and goes wheres great nana….is she hiding on me.. lets go find her. it was heartbreaking to explain where great nana was “hiding”.

    • rye says:

      i laughed SO HARD at this.

  3. Jacki says:

    This reminds me of when my niece and nephew were getting baptized (4 & 3 years old) our son was 2. The church fell silent and Christopher pulls out his binky with a loud pop sound and proceeds to let out the biggest belch in the history of mankind. Needless to say I wanted the earth to open up and swallow us

  4. Micki says:

    When my daughter was about the same age, she did the same thing at a church service. It was quiet right after the music and she started clapping. When people around her shushed her she said – why? I liked that music (not quite the same way she said it, however). the priest roared with laughter and said he only wished everyone was so appreciative. I love that memory as well. She’s now 24!

  5. Kami says:

    That’s the way it happens, always. (I would have giggled.) I hope you have a wonderful and relaxing (HAHAHAHA), Mother’s Day!!!

    • Kami says:

      I forgot to write write about my Grandfather’s funeral. My mother was standing up at her seat and she was speaking to everyone. My nephew, who was about 3 at the time and had always been taught to be quiet in church, said “Grammy, Be quiet”. Everyone laughed. It was a great release for everyone.

  6. Kate L says:

    AAAAHAHAHA! Love this one.
    I love that you are still in your “usual attire” at the funeral :)
    And YAY for Music Appreciation!!

  7. Susan says:

    When my mother in law passed away, my father in law was insistent that ALL six grandchildren should be there, in the front row, ranging in ages from seven years to two weeks. My then 18 month old niece Madi LOVES music, and when the soloist went up to do a medley of hymns, Madi toddled up the stairs to the podium and stood entranced, watching the soloist, swaying with the music, and the soloist at one point looked down at her and sang to her. It was the sweetest, most precious moment for everyone there. After that Madi and her cousin Ireland (2 1/2 at the time) did start making a fuss and were taken to the nursery.

  8. Alison says:

    If anybody throws a funeral for me, I hope there will be 2 year olds having fun there. :)

    • Karen says:

      :) that is really a sweet sentiment.

    • neal says:

      Totally agree. The more playing, happy children, the better.

    • Mel says:

      Here here!

    • M says:

      Yes! Oh, me too.

    • Brianne says:

      Amen, sista!!!

    • Bethany says:

      I want balloons instead of flowers at my funeral. Big, bright, happy bunches of balloons, and kids are not only welcome, but I might even arrange to have a few of them do a talent show, because that would be the greatest way to brighten up a funeral ever.

    • Maria says:

      Totally agree!!

      • Jodi says:

        I don’t want people to be sad at my funeral. I want to go out in style like they do in New Orleans with music and a parade and people celebrating my life. That’s how I want to be remembered.

    • Laura says:

      My dad always joked that he wanted people in Hawaiian shirts at his funeral to spice things up a bit. So when he died quite unexpectedly, his brothers showed up at church with bright flowered shirts. It helped everyone to crack a smile on what was otherwise a horrible day.

    • Colleen says:

      My daughter was all about children. At her funeral last year her 10 year old daughter read a speech she had prepared and all of her neices and nephews were there. The funeral home was full of people and some were turned away at the door but following the service, there were many children laughing and playing, which she would have loved.
      Our family was quite proud that the house we lived in was built by my dad and many stories were told about events surrounding that. During my father’s funeral, the minister read the passage containing the words “many mansions” and my son ‘whispered’ “Grandfather is building us a mansion so it will be ready for us in heaven.”

    • Kirsten says:

      Amen to that!

  9. Madeleine says:

    We also had a funeral when our eldest was about that age and she also started clapping at the end of the songs. Thankfully, we were in a side room rather than the main church and it was a very upbeat sort of funeral so it went down ok.

  10. Rose says:

    I love it!!

    We went to funeral when my kids were 1, 2, 5, and 8. (I hadn’t had the youngest yet.)

    My 2 year old noticed that everyone was crying, and yelled, “Quick Momma! Get you boobies out!” [Apparently she had made the connection that her little brother stopped crying when I got my boobs out, aka nursing him.]

    Oh man. I wanted to trade places with the deceased.

  11. Gail Norris says:

    My aunt – who was a jokester and life of all the family parties – died when my twins were 4. I had to travel out of town with them alone, overnight, to attend the viewing and funeral. I wasn’t sure how they were going to handle the viewing, and was certain they’d have lots of questions about death, and possibly be freaked out by seeing her body in the coffin. I asked them if they wanted to go up front and see her, and they both said yes….and they walked up quietly with me. As we approached, I heard them whispering to each other, and my son says to my daughter “She looks like she’s sleeping…i think we should go up and yell ‘Boo!’” Thankfully they didn’t, but I know that had they done it, my aunt would have been looking down laughing at them…and at me trying to whisk them out of the funeral home as fast as possible.

  12. Kirkley B says:

    you are braver than i. i dont know what i would do if i had to go to a funeral for someone both my mother and i know (as she’s my go-to sitter).. unless it was family because nobody would care.

  13. Karen says:

    One time at church when my daughter was three she yelled, “My BAGINA is itchy! Mommy, my BAGINA is ITCHY!” Our pastor wound up turning around to hide his smiles after so many people started snickering. I about died and tore out of there so fast you wouldn’t believe.

  14. Jennifer says:

    When my grandmother died my parents explained to my little brother that it was just her body in the casket and that she was in heaven. We were going to have a service, go to the cemetery where the casket would go in the ground and then we would go eat. About midway into the Catholic service he yelled, “WHEN ARE WE GOING TO PUT HER IN THE GROUND SO WE CAN EAT!” No one has ever forgotten it!

  15. Marilyn says:

    My dad-in-law passed away when my older daughter was 18 months old. My husband got up to say some words for his father (they were best friends). I’ve never seen my husband in such a state. Anyways, as he cried, and stumbled through what he wanted to say, our daughter called to him. He ended up holding her, and was able to finish what he needed to say.
    Not exactly a fun story, but makes my heart swell when I think if it.

  16. Glenna says:

    ZOMG! I am so glad you didn’t post this last week! We just took our 16 month old to a memorial service this past weekend. I was armed with books and quiet toys. He made it through the whole mass with few problems. The worst part for us was when everyone was kneeling, because he wanted to use the kneeler as a chair and then he also wanted to bang his foot on the ground at the same time.

    At the end of the mass, he didn’t have any socks or shoes on, but he was still being quiet. A lot of people told us how good he was, so I am counting it as a win!

  17. Amanda says:

    I have been lucky enough to have someone to watch my kids when I have had to attend funerals, my mom was not so lucky.

    My brother is 4 years younger than me the first funeral I remember my brother attending was our Great Grandfathers. We had a fish who had died the previous week so we flushed him down the toilet. We were sitting in the church listening my brother playing with his cars and drawing. Half way through the funeral my brother (who was about 3) realized what we did to fishy the a couple days before, stood up and screamed, “They can’t flush grandpa down the toilet, he is too big he isn’t small like Fishy was.”

    The whole church burst into laughter, my mom quickly ushered us out of the church.

    • Monica says:

      OMG i’m laughing so hard at this one!!!! only cuz my kids think that too at funerals!! we had a tank with 5 fish and one by one they died (youngest over fed them) and when we went to the one funeral with them they asked quietly “will we flush him too?” i nearly died laughing and no one knew why!

    • Jen says:

      Oh my word, I have tears in my eyes from laughing too hard reading this!!!

  18. Becca says:

    My son was a little over 2 years old when my grandma past away. We decided my husband would stay out with him during the service. Once the service was over family exited first, my son started fist bumping my cousins, dad, etc as they came out. I got distracted for a moment, once I looked up again realized others were leaving the service and my LO was still fist bumping everyone coming out, including the little old ladies!

  19. neal says:

    Everyone grieves differently, but I bet somebody there really needed to hear a happy baby enjoying themselves.

    We were in church and my daughter (about 18 months old as well) suddenly stood up and screamed at the preacher, “BULL SHIT!” People turned to look, and she explained further, pointing accusingly towards the pulpit, “BULL. SHIT!”

    Because he was wearing a blue shirt.

    Kinda embarrassing, but mostly awesome. I only regret that her pronunciation has improved, and so I’ve stopped pointing out to her people wearing blue shirts. Ah, the good old days.

    • Ginger says:

      You’re awesome! And your kid too.

    • Bethany says:

      This is the greatest story ever.

    • Patti says:

      I’ve been steadily laughing at all these comments, but the blur shirt is the best so far!!!!!!!!!! I left my 2 year old with my MIL when I went to my 97 yr old great grandmas funeral and I’m still not sure that was the right choice. Surely she would have brightened up the mood, if only for me.

    • rye says:

      oh man this thread is killing me.

    • Jan says:

      Hahahhaahahahaahhahaah!! I love this! Because when my son (almost 3) says Red Frog… It comes out sounding like What the Fuck! My husband and I can hardly contain ourselves and our friends find it pretty amusing, too! But one day he said it at the playground… With no red frog in sight… giving us no clear way to explain our way out!!! Heeeheeee! Good times!

      • hay says:

        I had a friend whose toddler had trouble saying Cookie Monster — it came out “Cookie F***er”. Hilarious.

    • Deborah Kline says:

      Thats is so cute and funny. My brother used to call trucks “frucks”…needless to say, that got some double-takes!

      • Shannon says:

        My little brother loved Thomas the Tank Engine, but when he said ‘The Fat Controller’, it came out sounding more like ‘the fuckin troller’..

        • Jo says:

          My kids have trouble with truck and fork…. they both sound like the F word. Sit and shirt both sound like another S word too. We have fun at church….

        • Bonnie says:

          OMG! And I thought saying just Fat Controller would turn heads! I have a Thomas Trainiac and when he used to say “Percy” it sounded like, well, it rhymes with wussy….. ;)

    • rachel says:

      best. comment. ever.

    • Amanda says:

      My youngest for some very unknown reason says something that sounds like dumb a$$ when he sees a pick up truck. He can clearly say truck and for a while we thought maybe he’s saying Thomas, but no that’s clearly Thomas the train. Perhaps when he’s 3 he can explain why trucks are dumb a$$, lol

      • Mamaishtari says:

        My son says dump truck but for all the world it sounds like “dumb f**k.” I also enjoy pointing them out for him. My boss and I now use “dump truck” as a code word.

        • Hanoy says:

          My parents used to babysit a little boy who we used to take fishing. When he said fish it came out ‘dick’ one time we had visitors and he tried to tell them my dad had a big fish…

  20. Sim says:

    All these comments are slaying me! I may have it written into my will that some children must talk about boobies and baginas at my funeral.

  21. Molly says:

    My husband’s grandmother died when our first son was about 16 months old. They were very close and she had live a long life – almost 95 years old. We all traveled to Connecticut in December for the funeral, and I ended up spending the whole (Catholic) service in the church basement while our son played with his matchbox cars. I think it brought everyone a bit of joy to see him at the wake, though, and a child does serve as a reminder of the “circle of life” in sad times.

  22. Jen says:

    Oh, this brings back memories of last winter when my own Crappy Girl was not-yet-two and my Crappy Baby was eight weeks old. My grandmother passed, and so not only were all babysitters accounted for; they were also grieving and I was chosen to speak on behalf of the grandchildren. And I was a pall-bearer. Did I mention that? And since we were The Family, we were seated as a group at the Very Front of the Church. Well, Crappy Girl is precocious, and also inquisitive. And loud- did I mention loud? Her sweet voice is of the piercing variety; it’s as though she lacks volume control entirely. And since Grandma was 94 years old at the time of her passing, the average age of the well-attended church was roughly 80; the family brought that number down only slightly. As we processed, me wearing Crappy Baby in a soft buckle carrier while bearing the casket with my cousins and my husband walking beside me, Crappy Girl in hand, she narrated all the way up the aisle to all in attendance, “GREAT GRANDMA DIED! SHE DIED! SHE DEAD NOW! GREAT GRANDMA DDDIIIIIEEEED!” I briefly hoped that my self-consciousness was amplifying her little voice in my mind, but I was later assured that the entire congregation heard her sermon in full. She ended up spending approximately five minutes in Grandma’s funeral service before her dad took her to the church nursery, leaving me with just one Little to worry about as I addressed the congregation. Fortunately, when you are The Family, people are pretty forgiving of “minor” disruptions.

    In spite of the complication of bringing my eldest to Grandma’s funeral, though, I have to say that I’m really happy she was there. To this day, she talks about Great-Grandma and continues to process her passing and what that means. I think, in her own little way, the funeral allowed her some closure, and her in-service musings about the situation have offered a funny family story on an otherwise sad occasion.

    • Amanda says:

      I was unsure about bringing my children (4,3 and 1) to my grandpas funeral. They had been told that grandpa had died and was in heaven. They said he was eating chocolate and dancing (perhaps what they wanted to do). My son, 4, was quite close to my grandpa and had taken his passing very well. Until they brought the casket into the church. My son asked what the box was and the hardest thing I had to do then (and I’m the one who told my mom) was tell my son that grandpas body was in the casket and that we would be burying it. I thank God for my son’s understanding of God and heaven at his young age. He cried but did take great comfort knowing that Grandpa was safely in heaven. Almost 5 years later he still talks of Great Grandpa and the memories they shared and I’m glad that he was at the funeral.

  23. Lisa Lutes says:

    When my oldest daughter was 15 months we took her to my grandma’s funeral. While my aunt was reading a poem and everyone was sobbing she suddenly yelled out THAAAAAAAAATS CAAAAAAAAAT!

  24. imamann says:

    at my papal’s funeral this year, i was giving the eulogy. i had talked quite a bit with my four year old before hand about what to expect. i had told her there would be crying, and that grandma would cry because it was her papa. i also said i would likely cry. when i sat back down after speaking, she looked at me and said, ‘when are you going to cry?’

    • Amanda says:

      I didn’t cry when my grandpa died (honestly I knew he was welcoming of meeting his creator and couldn’t have asked for a better way for him to pass), the only time I did cry was when my son realized it was great grandpa in the casket. My older two often asked why I wasn’t crying and everyone else was. It was great to share with them how I was happy for my grandpa, that I missed him terribly but I knew I’d be seeing him one day.

  25. Georgia Sabovich says:

    I still remember when my son was 3-years-old, and we were sitting in the Aladdin audience at California Adventure. All was going well, so why did my son pick the ONE soundless moment at the end of a number to yell loudly, “I have to go POOP!” Needless to say, the entire audience got whiplash as they turned to look. Thankfully, everyone laughed while I died a little inside. LOL! Kids do say the darndest things, don’t they. And another Disneyland story (I really need to stop taking my kids there)…when my other son was 4-years-old and at that age of filter-less-ness, I saw a morbidly obese woman rolling towards us in one of those electronic wheelchair carts. She was probably 500 lbs. Let me tell you that I KNOW my son, and I was already inwardly cringing. I tried to distract him by pointing out other things in the surrounding area. I tried to talk about rides while blocking his view, because there was no time for damage prevention. But it was too late. He had locked his eyes on her from 50 feet away. So, what does he say when she comes within 5 feet of us?? “Mom, that lady is HUGE! She is SO FAT!” OMG! I wanted the earth to open and swallow us up. I felt so badly. The lady was so offended and gave us a death glare. I had to have a talk with my son about the impoliteness of his words and how words can hurt people, etc. Sheeesh, kid!

    • Brenna R says:

      I’m so sorry that I’m laughing so hard at this. Can’t fault him for honesty! Filters are for grown-ups. Lol.

      • May says:

        I so know how you feel my sons aged 4 and 6 found a lady in full burka in the audience at the theatre and loudly asked her if she was a ninja… To my credit I had a little talk with them and kept my face straight the whole time!

    • Ruth says:

      I had a similar experience with one of my daughters when she was about 3. We were in a bathroom at a church (not ours) and a woman with a very large stomach came out of one of the stalls. I saw my daughter look at her…and it’s almost like you can see the words forming in her head…so I try to get out before she can say anything, but, of course, I’m not fast enough. On our way out the door, in a very loud voice, she asks, “Mommy…is that lady getting a baby?” I had to face the woman afterward, too and have that argument with myself in my head that goes, “I’m sure she heard and I feel like I should apologize. But what if, by some miracle, she didn’t hear…or didn’t know it was her my daughter was referring to? And just how would I bring it up, anyway?” There just is no getting around the awkwardness. :-p

  26. Kristen says:

    Aww, Crappy Baby was so cute as a baby!

    If you decide to illustrate other people’s stories again, you have some good choices here. I vote for the “get your boobies out” family.

  27. Katie says:

    Am I the only one that is impressed that her 18 month old strung together a 3 word sentence?! I have to admit, that’s impressive.

    • Jill says:

      My middle daughter was speaking in full sentences when she was 14 months old. All kids are different!

    • AmandaPN says:

      My daughter was talking like that very early on, as well. Prior to 18 months, for sure.

    • rose says:

      Impressed, jealous, heaving a big sigh as I wait for my 22 month old to add words to her vocabulary which consisting of yeah, daddy, and mo(re)…

      • HM says:

        My daughter started early, but my son didn’t speak in full sentences until he was almost 3. He understood a lot, though. If I asked him to bring me something, he would. When my husband would ask, “So when are you going to talk,” he would get this sad, hurt look on his face! Anyway, they’re 9 and 6 1/2 now, and they both NEVER stop talking!! Something for you to look forward to ;)

    • Lauren says:

      seriously! my son is nearly 3 and just finally started stringing words together! To his defense, he had hearing issues until he was 2… but still, I really doubt 18 months would’ve happened regardless! Kudos!

    • m-noelle says:

      Yeah at 18 months a full sentence that is impressive , mine has lots of words and nearly full sentences now at 22 mths. Talking about mispronunciation gaffs, someone told my 7 year old a Bad Word at school when she eventually said it she screamed FOLK very loud ..he he I haven’t corrected her yet maybe some people do curse that way….

  28. Taylor says:

    When my grandmother died, immediate family members (meaning my dad, my aunt, and my grandmother’s siblings) were given roses to place on top of the casket at the close of the burial. My two-year-old daughter noticed this and decided she wanted a rose, too. I tried to hush her, but of course that didn’t work, and her insistence on a rose began to escalate to demanding. Of course I eventually gave in and let her have one, and then I walked up to the casket holding her hand and instructed her to place it on top of the other roses. The idea of giving up her ‘pwincess wose’ was not one she was on board with, so of course, in front of everyone, she shrieked and ran out of the tent screaming, “NO! MINE! I NOT GIVE IT BACK!” in true toddler fashion. Fun times.

  29. Sheilah says:

    My son did that at an Easter service when he was about 18 months old. The choir had just stopped singing, and he really wanted to show his appreciation. Unfortunately, he waited until we were already renewing our baptismal vows. As soon as the priest said, “Do you reject Satan…,” my son stood up, clapped his hands, and shouted “Yaaayyy!!” Everyone thought I had trained my baby to cheer Satan!!

  30. Donna says:

    We were in church when my nephew was getting baptized. We are not church goers,usually, and when all the singing starred my 2 yr old cried his head off. Once it stopped he was fine but there was A LOT of singing, quite embarrassing.

  31. Rebeka says:

    Went to a double funeral with my then 15 month old. He was doing really well, but during the eulogies he kept calling for pappy. No one seemed to mind & everyone thought he was cute. We then did our final goodbyes going to the caskets & the families, as we walked away my son looked at my cousins & said bye-bye & waved to them. I think everyone that wasn’t crying started to. Amazing what children say/do at certain times.

  32. Dawn says:

    We were at church and went up to the alter for communion. The pastor goes around giving out the wafers, and for kids, places his hands on the child’s head and says a quick prayer. My son (who had just turned 2) was anxiously waiting his turn. When the pastor passed him by with only a prayer and no communion, my son screamed, “WHERE’S MY COOKIE AND JUICE!?!” The whole church cracked up and I wanted to slide out a side door.

  33. Kristin says:

    We were just at a funeral for my sister’s FIL about a month ago. It was a Catholic mass, we are Catholic and regularly go. Didn’t think it would be that big of a deal. My parents are not Catholic, and my 2 year old after going up during communion went back to the pew, saw my dad who was still there, and yelled “YAY! GRANDPA!!!”

  34. Jo says:

    I went to a funeral last month with my 30 month old. It was standing room only and when she asked for boobie we had to go to a side room.
    During the service I started to cry – she looked at me, asked for a tissue and then gently wiped my tears while telling me to, ‘Be happy Mummy!’.
    I will treasure the loving and caring memory and I’m sure the wonderful lady who we all miss was looking down and smiling as well.

    • amanda says:

      at my nanas funeral my son grabbed some tissues wiped my eyes and said dont cry mommy be happy……then curled up on my lap for a hug…..

  35. Teresa says:

    Ah, yes. Kids say the darndest things!

  36. Betsy says:

    My mom loves this story. She took me to my first Christening when I was less than 5. We’re Jewish, and my parents were hippy artist farmers. Our neighbors literally came over on the Mayflower and got land grants from the King. The christening was held at the private chapel on the family’s manor house. I kid you not. So, the officiant dude is doing his priestly duty stuff. He starts dishing out the wine and bread. “This is the blood of Christ, this is the body of Christ.” And I bellow in total disbelief, “JESUS WAS A VAMPIRE?’
    Snort.

  37. Emily L says:

    When our daughter was getting baptized, our son was 3 1/2. Our priest insisted on doing the baptism during mass, so we sat on the front row as he asked. Baptism went fine, mass was going well, until the Holy Eucharist. After the parishoners received it and everyone was kneeling and praying while the priest washed and cleaned up (which he is notorious for taking his time here), my son *very* loudly let out a big sigh of boredom! The priest stopped what he was doing, looked at us, and even chuckled! Afterwards the priest just said ‘I don’t like to do the dishes either’. :-)

    • June1 says:

      Ahhhh! I love it. That reminds me of a baptism I went to last week. There were eight babies there that day and only one of them was crying. She shrieked and shrieked and when the parents got her to calm down a little, the priest (who was generally hilarious and wonderful) remarked, “Ah, the joys of celibacy!”

      Best. Comment. Ever! :D Completely eased any lingering tension in the air.

  38. FarmWife says:

    At my great aunt’s funeral my sister and I were wrangling my 2 year old daughter and her 3 year old son. One of my cousins was telling a story about going to Santa Claus, IN with his recently deceased grandmother when my nephew (who was happily and obliviously playing under my feet) snaps to attention and shouts, “Santa Claus?! I LOVE Santa Claus!”
    Luckily our family has a wonderful sense of humor and everyone giggled.

  39. Grace says:

    My grandma passed away this year and we were at the family service. Everyone was encouraged to say something about my grandma and my dad mentioned that he had made Mickey Mouse pancakes that morning in honor of her (something she always made for us kids). My 4 year old son proceeded to yell at the top of his lungs how “mom always makes us Mickey Mouse pancakes and when I was at Grandma Sally’s house she did that too!!”
    There was a mix of tears and laughter after that. Everyone said that it was so nice to hear a little one contribute his memories as well.

  40. Michelle says:

    So appropriate since I had to take all three kids to a funeral last year. One of them did the backstroke down the pew. Read about it if you want…http://imlivingthegoodlife.blogspot.com/2012/07/three-kids-and-funeral.html

  41. BoyChild was almost two at my grandfather’s funeral, and he was surprisingly well-behaved and still the whole time. (He can’t even sit through the song part of church at home, so I don’t know how he did it!) *GirlChild* on the other hand, at almost five, commandeered the children’s sermon portion (which was cute and helped the pastor out since all the other children were apparently struck mute), sang “Mary Had a Little Lamb” instead (loudly) when she was unfamiliar with one of the hymns, and corrected the pastor’s pronunciation of “amen” (she said ah-men instead of a-men like GirlChild expected) out loud in the middle of the service. Still, overall, it was better than I expected it to be!

  42. Nikki says:

    Children as such a blessing. They can bring joy to even the darkest of days. Loved reading all the stories that others shared the children in their lives. And I agree, I anyone has a funeral for me I hope it is filled with children celebrating life.

  43. Christine says:

    It wasnt a funeral but a friend of mine, when her crappy daughters were 3,8 and 12 had aquite a scene in church. Crappy Mom Joan had dropped off the kids at church and realized she forgot something at home. Crappy 12 year old was to watch her sisters in the service and Mom would be right back. When Crappy Mom got back she saw the crappy girls sitting on the steps of the church. The 12 year old explained that Crappy middle girl was teasing the crappy little girl over a pencil. Having had enough, crappy little girl stood up on the pew, at a really quiet moment in the service and said “Give me the F$%^ing pencil!!!!!!!!!!!!”. Crappy oldest had quickly rushed the 2 younger girls outside. Crappy Mom went in and spoke to the Preacher who said it was ok, things happen, they pick up words sometimes and say them at the worse times. Crappy Mom had the mouth of a sailor so it was no surprise! LOL!

    My own crappy daughter did not go to a funeral till she was about 6. I was worried about how she would feel seeing a dead body for the first time. My grandmother had died. She looked at her lying in the casket and said out loud “She looks like sleeping beauty….and old sleeping beauty”. I had to LOL! My gramma would have loved it.

  44. Ellen says:

    When my hubby’s grandfather died my daughter was just 11 days old, but we flew out to go to the funeral. I was so glad we brought her with us, though she was really too small to cause much trouble. Having his newest great-granddaughter there was what ‘old gramps’ would have wanted. All the little old ladies were super impressed when hubby went to change her diaper in his Navy uniform, and I got to hear so many beautiful nursing stories from them when I went to feed her. It’s a lovely memory despite being a really sad day.

  45. Christina says:

    When I was in my teens I attended my cousin’s funeral. My younger brothers were off in a toy room that was provided by the funeral home. My mom and I were sitting with the adults, quietly mourning the loss of our loved one when…. from out of nowhere, we started hearing the bellowing of a goat.

    “B-a-a-a B-a-a-a-a-a-a B-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A”

    My mom looked at me and (loudly) whispered “Is that your brother!?!?!?” Before I could say “I think so”, she was off and running!! They’d learned this hilarious little skit involving a goat just a few days before and they wanted to share it with the kids who had become their audience.

  46. Lindsay J says:

    I took my 16 month old to a funeral last August. It was my husband’s grandmother’s. I took both of my boys in, expecting a little noise and problem, but not too much. Then I noticed that everyone around me was completely annoyed with my children, when I thought they were being really good, considering. After many dirty looks from my sister in law, and arguing with my husband, I took the boys out. So why did I go? I still haven’t figured that out.

    • Alicia says:

      Aww. That’s terrible. Don’t let it get you down.

      • m-noelle says:

        yeah I agree don’t let it get you down all generations need to be at funerals, personally I find the distraction a relief from the hardcore grief…

  47. Judy says:

    We took the kids to their Great Grandmother’s wake and kept them in the hall. While we were visiting with family members in the hall, my son (about 3 at the time) peeked his head into the room with the casket and yelled “Hey, what’s that man doing sleeping in that bed!”

  48. Sharon says:

    Not so much at the funeral, but on the way to one, my kids and I had a pretty amazing chat about death in general. Hint: My son decides he wants to come back as a speedbump on the 101 Freeway. Story here

  49. Yasmin elliott says:

    It wasn’t a funeral, but the yearly photo for my OH’s side of the family. Grandparents, MIL, Uncles, Aunts and cousins all standing smiling waiting for the camera to go off when my then 2year old shouted ‘my Daddy has a penis’. The photo shows me roaring with laughter and the other members looking amused/shocked.

  50. Elisabeth says:

    My son was baptized a bit late, around 10 months old, so he was already very mobile and not wanting to be held … I was wearing a nice dress and everyone was videotaping me as I held him over the baptismal font, when … bam. He pulls my top down to show off my flowery brassiere to God and everyone … including the visiting deacon. It was an awesomely terrible moment that is recorded forever, even when I said “Oh no, he has my dress” and the deacon says … “I can see that.” HA! Thankfully my family had the good taste not post it on youtube … (also, at the same baptism the deacon points out that my son’s middle name is the patron saint of sea travelers, which amused everyone since it is well known he was conceived on a cruise ship … all kinds of inappropriate happening that day).

  51. Amy Abbott says:

    We took our five year old son to his Great Grandmothers funeral a few years ago. It was a very sober affair. Many people had prepared something to say and went up to the podium to speak. After the last speaker was completed, my Mother in Law asked if anyone else had something they would like to say and IMMEDIATELY my sons hand shot up and he popped up to the podium. His father and I were gripping each others thighs in terror as he made his way up to the microphone. He proceeded to give the most BEAUTIFUL eulogy I have ever heard telling the crowd not to be sad, because Grandma is happy in heaven with all her relatives that had already left & that he was happy he could see her face in his face, etc… He brought the house down in tears. (We had never had the death talk with him by the way). It’s one of the most precious memories I will ever have. I’ve never been more proud to be his Mommy. :)

  52. Jen says:

    My son was a little over four months old when my grandma passed away. We didn’t have a big funeral service or anything, just something small at the funeral home for immediate family. My husband was holding Cooper on his lap. During a very moving and beautiful poem my aunt wrote about her mother, my son let out this huge (and I mean HUGE) fart. The tears that had started to stream from my eyes suddenly stopped and it took all that I had not to bust out laughing. My mom along with my other family members start to laugh quietly, except for my aunt who continued to read the poem. My husband’s face got bright red from embarrassment. It definitely lightened up a somber mood for us all.

  53. Emily says:

    My grandfather died when my son was 27 months old. Since we were family we were sitting in the 2nd row of pews towards the center aisle of the church. During the first solo, my son starts puking everywhere. All my husband can say is “ohmygod.ohmygod.ohmygod.” while I’m cupping my hands together to try to catch the puke. Finally I just pick him up to get the hell out of there, but the only way out was through the front of the church. So I had to go down the center aisle, to the front of the church, around the casket, and through the front door, with my back to the congregation, and my son facing the congregation… leaving a trail of puke behind us. My grandfather would have been laughing hysterically the whole time and we’ll never forget that funeral!

  54. Amy says:

    I’m literally about to do this right now. I’m dressed and getting my daughter (whose 1st birthday is Saturday) ready for my mother-in-law’s funeral. I’m petrified that she’s going to… well, be a toddler. Please wish me luck.

    • K says:

      Please report back!! How did it go???

      • K says:

        Btw, I’m very sorry for your loss!

        • Amy says:

          Thank you.

          I ended up on the lobby floor with her for most of it. I was really, really, really hoping that she’d behave during the eulogy… Not so much. She wanted to get down and run around, drink a water bottle… be a toddler. I had to take her out to run around.
          Though, my focus on her was a welcome distraction to the sadness. My MIL was only 56 years old when she passed away. My daughter will never know just how much she adored her.

  55. Colene says:

    When my son was about the same age, my husband’s grandpa passed away. During the funeral, when the Pastor was listing the family members in attendance my little guy clapped and yelled Yay! when he heard his name. Everyone chuckled and its still something we laugh about. :)

  56. Bethany says:

    My son was only 4 months old when I took him to a funeral. I figured he would either sleep or nurse the whole time, so no big deal, right? Except that this church was reeeeaaallly tiny, and had no carpeting, so everything echoed in the small space. Then, in the middle of the prayer, he pooped. Not just any poop, but one of those explosive, gassy, gurgle-y poops that sounds like you’re running a cup of wet mud under an espresso machine. And it blew all out the top of his diaper. Everybody in the church thought it was hilarious, fortunately. I still thought I was going to melt from the shame, though.

  57. Chelsea says:

    One of the sweetest stories recounted about my cousin who was killed in his early 20s was that, at our aunt’s wedding when he was about 8 years old, he climbed up on a pew and, during a quiet moment in the ceremony, jumped off and yelled “Cowabunga!!!” Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle-style. So cute!

  58. Olivia says:

    Of course everbody loves kids at a funeral! Because they make you realize that life goes on!! We had it three times in the last 5 years, our daughters are 6 and 3, and we always took them with us. The best was my granddad’s funeral when his grandgranddaughter started to dance … And then people crying suddenly have to smile …

  59. Elaina says:

    During my son’s baptism in Spain the priest took baby V to look at the Virgin Mary and whilst in front of it asked… “Do you see the virgin?” Baby V looked around the room looking for the virgin w/the priest trying to get him to look in the direction of virgin. Needless to say, at least a few of us parishioner lost it. My mother in law was not amused. lol

  60. Annemarie says:

    Worst memory of taking my youngest to a funeral was similar, in Chattanooga the body is on display up front…like a stage, even with curtains that open to music, of course my toddler clapped as the curtains opened. Which only paled in embarrassment to what happened later at the graveside service. As the preacher was blessing the final interment I was hearing a tapping sound, only to turn around and discover that same child tap dancing on a tombstone next to us! It was to say a short lived performance….

  61. Jo says:

    We were at my granny’s funeral. My kids were 6 and 3. There had been some issues with my step grandpa since granny’s death so we were keeping our distance hoping not to cause a scene. We let him plan it the way he wanted….even though granny had already prearranged everything before her death. We looked at the program and saw that my dad’s step sister was going to sing. Uh.. we’d never heard her sing, but assumed she was good since she was singing at the funeral. She got up to sing Amazing Grace and everyone was shocked. We were hoping the congregation would join in or something. My husband was a music major and my aunt and uncle sing and play blue grass music. We just sat there hoping our mouths weren’t too obviously open. Then my wonderful 3 year old looked at us and said as loud as she could… Mama. Why is that MAN singing so bad?!!? Everyone around us were trying hard to contain their laughs and giggles. My mom hurriedly ushered Kathryn out of the chapel. Gotta’ love kids!!

  62. Sarah says:

    I’ll be honest….I don’t remember a lot of my mother’s funeral. My daughter was 5 months old and did give me a chance to duck out for a while to breastfeed – giving me a time to think about something else for a while, which was something I very much needed. I seem to remember her making some adorable noises, but I was crying so much that I can’t be sure. =(

  63. Melissa W says:

    As a Funeral Director, I find this story absolutely hilarious! As a mother, I feel your humiliation. But, leave it to a child to have fun at a FUNeral!

  64. Jessica says:

    Our first funeral experience w/ our little guy was last year. My dad passed away unexpectedly, and my son was 4. I had to be in the receiving line, so he sat with my husband, in a PACKED funeral room. The service started, and then the moment of silence, in which my 4 yr old bursts out “PAPA???” and looks at me with the saddest face, as if at that exact moment, he understood, and that was it, the whole place erupted with “awww’s” and tears. The only young child there, missing his grandfather, and expresses it in the moment of silence. it will likely haunt me forever.

  65. Devin says:

    My grandmother just passed away last month. And we went back home for the service. Unforunately the funeral home is 3 blocks from the fire station, so during the opening song, my 2.5 year old hears a fire truck going by, sirens wailing, and yells “fire truck! fire truck! wee-oo, wee-oo! fire truck!” My hubby took him out, and they went to the park. Which left me in with my 6 month old little girl, who was named for my Grandma. She lasted through the opening prayer (after the song). It was nap time, and she wanted to nurse to sleep, and refuses to be under the nursing cover. So, we went in the family room.

  66. Crystal says:

    My great grandmother passed away last month, and we were encouraged to bring the children to the memorial service. We talked about what was happening and what our expectations were for them. The biggest one was that they were expected to be quiet during the service, and that meant no yelling from my boisterous 4 year old. He held up his end of the bargain, he didn’t yell at all, but did ‘meow’ quietly for the whole service.

  67. Love it- we’ve had things like that happen, and I truly think people appreciate the liveliness and sweetness of kids at services. In the midst of pain, there is joy.

    And I hope I have dancing little ones at mine one day!

  68. Sandra Nelsen says:

    My memory doesn’t involve kids. I was at my dad’s funeral, and my brother had put together a CD of some of my dad’s very favorite OLD country music, and it was playing before the service during the viewing. They switched off the music during the ceremony, of course. One of the funeral people hit the play button on the country music as the pall bearers were solemnly taking my dad’s casket out to the hearse. You guys probably have no clue about the song, “Cattle Call” but you should youtube it, as that song started playing. I laugh just thinking of it, as could just see my dad orchestrating the entire scenario from heaven. My youngest brother, who had put the music on the tape, did not find it humorous at all. It was funny. When I die, I plan to laugh with my dad about it. I wonder what craziness will happen at my own funeral. Maybe mayhem from a little 18 month old child. :-)

  69. Pami says:

    My grandmother passed away in March, two weeks before my cousin’s wedding. We told our 3.5 yo DD that the funeral was going to be very quiet, like church, and a lot of people would probably be crying. It was okay, it was just that Mommy’s Grandma was very loved, and we all were going to miss her. DD did really well at the funeral, sitting in the back of the service relatively quietly with no loud outbursts once the service started.

    Ten days later at my cousin’s wedding, though, DD struggled to sit still. We let her chatter all the way up until my cousin walked in with his best man, then tried to quiet her. She argued with me about it all the way up until the bride walked in, when DD yelled, “NO! I DON’T WANT TO BE QUIET!!!” In a room of only 50 people, I don’t think a single eye was on the bride at that point. /facepalm

  70. beth says:

    Family friend’s funeral with my preschooler. In line for the viewing she starts making a fuss and repeatedly yells, “I wanna see the dead lady!” So we eventually get up to the casket and she yells at me, “Where’s her wings?! You said she was an angel! I can’t see her wings! Where’s her wings?!”

  71. Jess says:

    My church moms’ group wanted the older kids to participate in a small celebration in the church hall. As the priest was doing his talk, my son began to loudly fake snore.

  72. Kenja says:

    Many years ago, we took our 3 year old daughter to a traditional Hispanic funeral. The funeral had a mariachi band. As we grabbed a seat in a pew in the middle of the church, it was very quiet and quite a few people we crying openly. The mariachi band started to play and before I knew what was happening, my daughter had wriggled out of my arms into the aisle so she could dance to the music. Tears turned to smiles and I left her there until the band stopped playing. To this day, my now 21 year old daughter loves mariachi music.

  73. Lisa says:

    I had my >2yo daughter at a friends wedding. I had no idea it was going to be a Catholic wedding with Mass and everything. During Mass my daughter was sitting on my lap facing me and playing with the pendant on my necklace for entertainment. (No, not well prepared at all) During a moment of silence she picked up the pendant and quizzically, in that super cute tiny kid voice, said “Buddha? Buddha?”. I prepared to be embarrassed and duck out. Before I did I glanced back to see who had uttered the disapproving “Shhh!” just then and changed my mind upon seeing an old battle ax who probably disapproves of children in general. I relaxed, praised my daughter for recognizing the Buddha and giggled inside for the rest of the ceremony.

  74. Sarah says:

    When an elderly friend of the family passed away, I took my then 3-year-old to the wake. I carefully explained that Mr. Smith had died and we were going to tell his family how sad we were for them. I also explained about the body being in the front of the room in the casket. Thankfully, there was no one near when he and I viewed the body. Son looked at the body, then looked at me. “He’s dead?”
    “Yes, honey, he died.”
    “Who shot him?”

    Worst. Mother. Ever.

  75. Maria says:

    I am half crying half laughing at all of these. Chuckles with tears. My Grandmother passed away a year ago…first funeral since I’ve had children. Anyhoo, my Dad did NOT want me to bring our children, so I was there, boobs aching while my husband was home with our 4 month old, 2 year old and 7 year old. :-/ After that I was pretty sure my husband was never going to let me out of the house again. (My kids will not take bottles and apparently my son screamed the entire time I was gone.)

  76. Kathy says:

    Children ARE a blessing, which is WHY we have them – they bring honest happiness to even the saddest of occasions – which again, is WHY we have them, they are the BEST part of life! In our church we had one little girl who would walk up the center aisle during Mass and wave and say “Hi” to the priest – he loved it, would smile and wave back at her. Sometimes she would go and sit on the lowest step leading to the altar. He would just keep on going (while her mom would quietly go up and escort her back to her seat). We have a great number of young families who now come to our church – WITH their kids (pastor does not mind baby noises), it is a vibrant happy congregation.

  77. Christine says:

    When my Dad died three years ago my then four year old niece was full of questions so her parents did their best to give her the best answers possible and prepare her for the service, she didn’t come to the wake so it was necessary to explain about the coffin. Her first question was “Why does Daddy Taylor have to go to the church in a box” the answer my brother gave was “because he can’t walk” to which she said “can’t we get him a wheelchair?”
    On arriving in the church for the mass she wanted to know where Daddy Taylor was so we indicated the pall covered coffin at the alter. She then piped up in a child’s whisper which carried to the back door of the church, “why did they put a blanket on Daddy Taylor? Was he cold?” At the grave side she wanted a ladder to go say goodbye one last time. She made it all so much easier for us all! It’s impossible not to smile at these things and knowing my Dad he would have been laughing along with her and us too.

  78. Stephanie says:

    At our 2yo son’s funeral, our 4yo jumped up and was walking around the flowers, looking at the candles. I was just praying he wasn’t going to set the place on fire or knock something over! I knew if I got up to get him, it would become a fun chase and one or both of those things would surely happen, so I let him wander for a bit. Thankfully he came back shortly! I’ve taken him to several funerals and had to step out every time. I feel your pain! Is so embarrassing. The seat by the door is always ours. At least when it’s not “our” funeral. I also arranged childcare at ours, to let parents relax and not worry about it! They said it was the most awesome idea ever!

  79. Aurora says:

    My 19 month old son also insists on clapping after performances, even when no on else does. I think it’s a sign of him being super smart. :)

  80. rye says:

    Not a funeral story, thankfully, but still hilarious (NOW!) and mortifying at the same time…

    When our son was 3 we took him to a local parade. It was near a Sikh temple and he was a bit fascinated with Indian people as we had gone to a celebration there a few weeks prior. The parade was super boring and had a few different floats. One of the floats was an old fiddler group and the other one happened to be from the Sikh temple and they had loud music playing from it. He got up to dance to the music before he saw the float, and noticed who was on the float seconds before the music got quiet.

    …of course at the exact second the music got quiet he yelled loudly “HOLY SMOKES, MOM! LOOK AT THAT!!! THERE IS A WHOLLLLEEEE TRUCK FULL OF INDIANS! WOW! A WHOLLLLLLLE TRUCK FULL OF INDIANS!!!!” extremely enthusiastically and LOUDLY.

    yep…I wanted to die.

  81. Kathryn says:

    There is something about that moment of silence…a couple of months ago at my grandmother’s service, my daughter chose that moment to yell “more cookie?” I was mortified, but everyone else found it hilarious. I think my grandma would have laughed too. :)

  82. Janine says:

    My younger sister died when my girls were 5 and 7.
    It was sudden and no one had been able to say goodbye so we thought it best for the girls to be able to go to the viewing.

    It was all handled beautifully with explainations of their aunt being in heaven with angels and this was jut her body sleeping in a special bed. The girls put her pajamas under the pillow on the coffin and left a teddybear each for company.

    The family all turned to leave and were talking amongst ourselves when we realised the 4yo was missing.

    After searching high and low we discovered her INSIDE the casket laying down next to her aunt because she wanted a nap too!!

  83. Gwen M says:

    My daughter was 3 when my grandmother passed away and at the cemetery in the chapel. The musician/guitarist was playing and singing and she darted out of the pew and started dancing around the front of the chapel.I wanted to grab her but my dad said to leave her because that is what my grandmother would have wanted. I know she won’t remember that day but I will always remember her sweet innocence in spite of a dark day.

  84. Melli says:

    At my daughter’s baptism, my then 2 year old watched his Aunty Em do a reading, then his grandpa, so he got up, tapped the priest on the leg and indicated he wanted the microphone. He then proceeded to talk a heap of nonsense for about a minute. The priest laughed, the congregation gave him a standing ovation. So cute! :-D
    This same child at age 3 was at a funeral of my best friends dad. He asked were we going to a party on the way to the funeral, i said yes, a going away party for Dad Hill. I explained Dad Hill was going to live in heaven and we had to go say goodbye. He sat quietly throughout, helped when hubby was a pall bearer and as the coffin drove away, he stood watching, then waving just said goodbye. Everyone just broke down.

    • Melli says:

      The same child at 2 sang happy birthday at a funeral when he saw a candle…… :-/
      There were a few stifled giggles at that one

  85. J. Stahl says:

    As one of my funeral director bosses would have said (at a job I haven’t had for oh 6 years) — your little one was just trying to put the FUN back in FUNERAL. ;)

  86. B. Nelson says:

    When my son was two, my grandfather-in-law passed. As his mahogany casket was being brought down the aisle of the very small church he attended, my son very loudly asked “What’s in the box? It looks like a Tootsie Roll?”

  87. Anneke says:

    Lol some of these stories are so funny and so sweet, when we were at a family christening, my boy went up for the cracker… and at the top of his lungs asked the father wheres the vegemite?!?

  88. Kate says:

    Our eldest was 18 months at the time of his great grandmother’s funeral. It started when his father was up the front reading the Bible. A little voice started calling out ‘Daddy’ getting louder and louder. Then he was really proud to spot his grandmother comforting his grandfather while he delivered the eulogy, and kept calling out ‘Ya ya’ (that’s what the grandkids call her). It certainly broke the tension. But the best bit was at the graveside when he saw a small backhoe parked a way off. His excited cries of ‘digger!’ could be heard by everyone.

  89. Jennifer says:

    Our last funeral experience was quite funny with my then 2 year old. The hubby’s grandma passed away and the funeral was only a short hour drive out of town. We kept finding ourselves apologizing but everyone else seemed to welcome the laughs he provided. He asked repeatedly at the cemetery when we were going to “marry” her. This was also our first experience at a Jewish ceremony. I can’t tell you how many times he asked why people were wearing “those silly hats.” The attendees actually take turns with the shovel tossing dirt on the deceased and I wish we had better prepared him for this occurring. He was so excited and kept jumping up and down shouting when would it be his turn to play in the dirt. The good thing is everyone did welcome the laughs. Grandma was known for having quite the sense of humor herself and probably would have appreciated his attendance but our faces were red all day!

  90. neo says:

    Cute. I ‘m sure it was a moment of much needed levity on a sad day.

  91. Karin says:

    My son yelled “But I like to pick my nose!” During the moment of silence.

  92. FarmWife says:

    My Grandma B passed away in March of 2011. The following December Grandpa B found some poems she had clipped out and put aside. One is called My First Christmas in Heaven. Grandpa read it aloud during our church service and I fell apart. I was crying and trying not to sob out loud.

    My sister and newly 5 year old nephew were visiting. They don’t go to church regularly so getting HT to sit still and be quiet can be a bit of a task. That Sunday he was doing great. After Grandpa read his poem our worship leader asked if anyone else had a special to share. HT’s hand shoots up (as his mother tries to stop him) and the worship leader says, “Do you have a special, Bud?” HT announces loudly, “I’m gonna’ ride in a big red monster truck!” Then goes back to playing with the hymnal.

    Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.

  93. Sarah says:

    Not a funeral story, but my just turned 2 year old yelled out, “NO!” At my nieces christening when the priest asked the parishioners if hey believed in god. Awkward…

  94. Robin Jingjit says:

    It’s mortifying for us as moms but almost everyone else loves it.

    My sister in law asked our boys to be her ring bearers. We tried to talk her out of it, they are pretty rambunctious. She insisted and in my eyes my son ruined the wedding. Instead of pillows she has little bears with the rings attached and he kept playing with it. When the pastor announced a special song, in the silent moment that followed my son belted out “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound!”
    The moment the wedding ended I ran offstage and cried. I bawled, I felt like the worst mother ever. And would you believe how many people told me afterward that he was their favorite part. Even the bride! Only the mom cringes!

    • SJP says:

      So true!

    • Mamaishtari says:

      Oh mama, be gentle with yourself. That is such a sweet story and those are the moments that make events memorable and all the more precious. I think you should celebrate this story, it’s so lovely!

  95. Elizabeth says:

    At my grandmother’s funeral, they gave the family a chance to view her in her casket. I asked my then-4-year-old daughter if she wanted to see Grandma Mary, and she said she did. I told her that she could leave at any time and sit on a chair in the hall about 10 feet away, but she did just fine. My brother hadn’t wanted to go in and arrived at the funeral home after we finished the viewing. He asked me if my daughter went in, and I said she did. He turned to her and asked, “How did she look.” My daughter thought for a second, and said, “She looked dead.” We laughed so hard we cried.

  96. meghan says:

    Our religious neighbor passed away in February. We get up to the casket to say a prayer. It’s quiet enough to hear a pin drop. DS blurted out “but the only prayer I know is the one we say before lunch!” It got my neighbor’s wife to laugh, and I know our neighbor would have too.

  97. JosieY says:

    As a priest who has done LOTS of funerals, I love having kids there. It really does show that love lives on after our mortal bodies die, and it gives an oit for all the tension that may be hiding. Bring on the toddlers!

  98. Eva Knox says:

    One of my favorite aunt’s mom passed recently. She was in her 90′s and a sweet little old lady to be sure. I wanted to go to the funeral to support my aunt and cousins. My husband is close friends with my cousins, and wanted to be there for them as well, so we had to bring the boys: 4-year-old big brother and almost 3-year-old twins. Well, my husband had to remove the boys from the church almost immediately, because they have no volume control. I stayed for the sermon, and could hear one of my twins loudly meowing like a cat intermittently throughout the service. It sounded really realistic too.

  99. melissa ann says:

    Though my sweet boys is only 11 months old, your sentence “For a moment I actually think this will be okay” is like the story of my life. I have too many stories to share – a wedding at 3 months, a funeral at 9 months, three services per week at church (cue baby talk when everyone’s silently praying), the list goes on and on. So glad I’m not the only Mama who goes through this!

  100. Lindsey says:

    I’m not one to comment, but I have a good one to share too (though it didn’t take place at a funeral).
    I was asked to sing at a family friend’s wedding. My husband was taking the pictures and, like you, all if our babysitters were there, so we had to bring our freshly minted two year old along (it wasn’t a fancy wedding and children were welcome to attend, thankfully!). My son sat with his grandma in the audience while my husband was rushing around takings pics and I was up at the front, ready to sing. The couple asked for the song to be sung as the bride was walking down the aisle. So here she comes, I sing the song….the song ends, the bride is standing at the end of the aisle waiting for her father to give her away and the room is completely silent. That is the exact moment that my son chose to stand up and yell, “YAY MOMMY!!!!” I was so embarrassed, but we got lots of sweet comments about my little “cheerleader.” And the couple said neither of them even heard him….so I guess my son didn’t ruin the moment too much!

  101. Emily says:

    When I was in high school my childhood cat passed away. Over the next year my parents, sister, her boyfriend (now husband) and I all got our own cat. Well jump ahead ten years and the cats are all elderly and starting to pass away. My sister by this time has two kids and she explains to them that they have gone to heaven. my niece 3 misunderstood and thought she said Kevin (a friend of the family). At church she was asked if she knew about heaven. She disgruntaly said yes he took all out cats.

  102. My husband’s grandmother passed away when my son was just 2 and 1/2 years old. We went to the wake and my mother-in-law took my son up to see the grandmother laid out in the casket. It was very, very quiet and when my son got to his seat, he said very loudly, “Babcia (grandmother in Polish)–can we go see the dead lady again?” Thankfully, the people that heard him just chuckled. Whew! You just never know what little kids are going to do–guess that’s what keeps us on our toes!

  103. Elizabeth says:

    One wedding we insisted our then 3yr old son wear his shirt tucked in for the duration of the ceremony. Cue much examination and explanation of the order of service so he knows exactly how long he has left to go. Finally the last song ends and in the quiet he announces ‘it’s over’ (and proceeds to untuck his shirt). Fortunately he was topped by another kid at the reception informing his father that he needed to poop in a pause between speeches.

  104. Katherine says:

    We were invited to visit our local church after baptizing our second baby. We thought it might be a good way to meet other families with young kids in our area, so we went – dragging my husband’s 15 year old and our two year old. It was a pretty under attended service (no future playmates to be found), but there was a soloist singing. After her first song, my two year old jumped to his feet, applauding and screamed “BRAVO!” I think it made the fifteen year old appreciate the whole experience. :)

  105. Candi says:

    My daughter, nephew, and cousin’s son are all within 2 weeks of each other in age. We all live thousands of miles apart. When they were all 3 years old, my grandmother died. We went cross country for the funeral, and these three little urchins bonded. They patted the hands of the grieving adults and said things like, “I know you’re sad because great grama died,” like little guidance counselors. They also sat on the prayer bench in front of the (closed) casket like it was a little couch made just for them and played with Hot Wheels. It was beautiful… big circle of life stuff. Everyone smiled through their tears and talked about how Grandma would’ve loved the kids being there. Family was important to her. It was perfect.

  106. m-noelle says:

    Just listened to Cattle Call on youtube ..you know it’s not a bad song to have a s a recessional at all..I think your Dad arranged it.

  107. RedinNC says:

    OMG Stop it stop it! I’m laughing and crying all over the place! It’s embarrassing!

  108. Jo says:

    All three of my remaining grandparents died within a year of each other when my kids were 3 amd 6. My grandma was the first to pass, followed by my granny, and then my step grandfather (he’d married my granny when I was 2). At my grandma’s funeral my kids did well. We’d talked about death and the funeral with my oldest, Byron and a little with Kathryn too. At the end of the service they wheels the casket out the door to the waiting hurse. Kathryn (then three) wiggled out of my arms, went over to the casket, touched it, and waved bye bye, then sat back in my lap. There wasn’t a dry eye in the chapel.

  109. Michele says:

    At my Aunts funeral at the burial site we were having our moment of silence. Aloof our heads were down except my 2 year old daughter.. Who happens to spy a stray cat and starts yelling “hi kitty! Hi kitty!!” Then she started towards the cat and I’m walking after her and almost tripped over a family member. They all still talk about, it did really lighten the mood.

  110. Kate says:

    My five year old cousin clapped and cheered when I was walking up to speak at my grandma’s funeral. It was so innocent and adorable. He completely lightened up the mood that day. It’s such a great memory!

  111. deanna says:

    my oldest son had just turned three when my grandfather died. he had been sick with alzheimers for years, so i had talked to my son about death and what would happen at the funeral. when we arrived, the first thing he shouted was, “i thought papa was gone! he’s just up there laying in that box!”

    for months afterwards he would approach kids everywhere and tell them how there were probably dead people buried under them right now.

  112. Teena says:

    My father in law passed away a year ago March. In the year since, every time we go to my inlaws house, my delayed, largely nonverbal 9 year old asks “Where’s Grandpa?” Then he will look up at the ceiling and yell “Hi, Hi Grandpa!” while waving. Makes you wonder….

  113. Devan says:

    I don’t really have a story, I just wanted to say I have LOVED reading every one of these comments! I have laughed and cried! One of my favorite posts just because of that. :)

  114. BethanyH says:

    At church this morning, a man got up to pray for all the prayer requests that had been listed. As he started listing requests he would say, “we pray for…. we pray that…” my 22mo heard the “we pray” part and so he folded his hands like for mealtime, but when the prayer kept going he said “may-men(amen)” and when he heard they were still praying he kept saying it louder and louder! We ended up making a quick dash for the back lol.

  115. Erika says:

    When my son was 4 my husbands grandpa died. We had not went to the front, tried to avoid it but were kind of pressured. Now, I know like most people, when we play dead in our house we lay there and stick our tongues out. So this is our first funeral with kids… We go up, dont get to close. My son has poor vision and got a little closer, then stepped back and looked at me like horrified I guess. This look was confusion and terror. I got down and said “what is wrong sweetie?” and he looks at me and says “Mommy, his tongue is not sticking out!” My husband and I laughed so hard. It was like, he was VERY concerned with the fact that we had always made him think being dead means your tongue is out. And when grandpas tongue wasnt out, that meant something was wrong!

  116. Lyz says:

    This story reminds me of my own wedding.

    When we got our pictures back, hubs and I noticed something very odd about the shot where he was kissing me. Everyone was smiling and happy, except my older sister (my matron of honor). She had a death glare.

    I asked her what was up with that picture. She had seemed happy enough prior to the wedding, so we couldn’t figure out why she looked so angry.

    My nieces were flower girls in the wedding. One was 9, the other 4. Apparently during the ceremony, the 4 year old was being silly – playing with her dress, playing with mine, putting the flower basket on her head, the whole shebang. My sister didn’t want to haul off and get onto her during the ceremony as that would make a bigger scene, so the best she could do was give her the Mommy death stare.

    I never noticed a thing during the wedding. Regardless of how mortifying it is for you, Moms, most everyone else either doesn’t notice or thinks it’s hysterical.

  117. Amy says:

    These are the most amazingly awesome comments I have ever seen! Thank you all for the laughs!

    Loved your book amber!

  118. Jo says:

    Your post brought me right back to my sweet Uncle Jack’s funeral. My daughter was four came along out of necessity. I prepped with construction paper cut into 4″x6″ and crayons in a zip lock. Throughout the service she created the most lovely drawings and misspelled captions of her experience. Angels and rest in peace, etc. To this day, I equate my loss with her drawings which so innocently captured our love for him.

  119. Haha says:

    When my now 11 y/o was 18 months, we attended my great grandmothers funeral. It was Nov in Utah and my baby had never seen snow, not in sunny CA. I was in a sling on one side from recent surgery and had a cracked rib on the other from a really bad cold. She raced around at the grave side playing in the snow, and I didn’t have the heart, strength, and frankly the arms to stop her. I was only able to keep her quiet. I worried about her ruining the service, but she only made it better. She reinforced life moves forward and helped my grandmother to see all the blessings she still had after losing her mom.

  120. Carmen says:

    When I was 4 I attend my paternal grandmother’s funeral. Just as the service started my mother walked out with my 1 1/2 yr old brother (probably in fear of her own Crappy Boy story)…anyway, when the Minister said, ” we are gathered here to remember Mrs. M—” I panicked. “Daddy, tell them that Mommy isn’t dead she is in the other room. She isn’t dead. why are they saying she is dead? Grandma died not my mommy.” My poor Father, trying to grieve while restraining a 4 year old determined to correct the Minister,mand trying to teach me that both Mommy and Grandma are Mrs. M—.

  121. Lisa says:

    My grandfather was a Knight of Columbus, and apparently a higher up one. At his funeral, there were two KoC colour guards (you should google image that). As they walked my grandfather’s casket down the aisle, my 2 year old nephew yells out, “PIRATES! Mommy, PIRATES!” Everyone giggled, and it’s exactly what my grandfather would’ve loved to hear happen. It was priceless. My aunt took my nephew outside, where he saw the hearse, which he dubbed “the Pirate Ship.

  122. Pingback: Two Birthdays and a Funeral - Illustrated with Crappy Pictures™

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