What to wear at a wake?

After receiving the news tonight of a relative’s passing, I found myself googling what to wear. The last wake I went to was right after work so I didn’t have to change – I was in working clothes and so were the rest of the people in attendance. However, I don’t wear formal clothes to work anymore, and also – it is the weekend, so I wouldn’t be at work anyway.

Anyway based on my search results, I should be wearing something dark and formal. I don’t think I’ll need to bring a blazer. It’s too hot in Malaysia right?

Wakes are not something I enjoy attending – heck, I don’t think anybody enjoys attending them. Maybe the pastor/monk being paid to run the ceremony. I’ve been to a fair share of them, and even though I wasn’t close to most of the people who passed away, I still felt sad. The collective mood of all the miserable people in the room just amplifies and washes over everybody. Nobody walks out happy.

He was a young man and I didn’t know him very well – the kind of relative I’d only see at Chinese New Year reunion parties. I feel sorry for his father who lost his wife to cancer not very long ago. He must be devastated right now. Nobody wants to see their own spouse or child go off before themselves.

Which made me think about dying. Death is inevitable. It causes so much grief – unless you were someone hated, then happiness (and this point wouldn’t matter anyway). Would it be better to run away and be declared missing rather than dead? I’m not sure which one is sadder but at least being missing does give people hope that you’re still alive. Nobody has to bury your body. There’s no need for a funeral.

I guess some issues will rise – like your unpaid debts and so on, but I doubt it’s any harder to settle than if you had passed away. Is that why pets run away before they die? I did some googling on it, turns out it’s not really true (for dogs anyway).

Wherever you may be now, I’m sure you’re in a better place.
Rest in peace, cousin.

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2 comments

  1. Miow says:

    It’s true for cats too. Except for the baby cats, none of the adult cats we had ever died at home.

  2. George says:

    Well, my dog has nowhere to run since I live in a condominium haha.