Episode 16: This is Us

Wow! Is all I can say. I just watched episode 16 and the birth father dies. Randall and his birth father go on a road trip together to Memphis, Tennessee where he was born to meet some family, visit some old haunts, and where William wanted to die, unknowingly to Randall. Memphis is where William was born, the place where he played piano, and created music with his cousin, and played in a band.

William becomes very ill, is hospitalized and dies in Memphis. Randall drives back to New Jersey alone… a few days later as he is cleaning out the room William stayed in, his wife stops in to chat, and they find a note. William knew he was not returning.

The note asks that his granddaughters plan his memorial service and no sadness allowed. Randall learns that his birth father was well liked by the mailman and many other people that met him on his daily walk.

The girls serve a buffet of his favourite food, play music he liked, and the family recreates a walk he took daily.

Issues of loss, death, dying, and grief, along with planning a memorial service for the person who died is not easy. Leaving instructions or guidance is appreciated and the service is for both the individual who died and for the living. Mourning and bereavement are steps the living must go through at their own pace and in their own way.

This will be seen more in future episodes, what people do and say and how they integrate the death into their lives.

Cried my eyes out and it is a series and not real, but the storyline, what happens is very true to real life for many. No one wants to die in a hospital, a nursing home, a senior or old person’s home; one wants to die at home. The home of their choosing if given the choice.

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