My Cousin Mary’s Funeral

I just got back from my cousin Mary’s funeral.  Except for my mom’s insanity and the priest at the mass, it all went how it’s supposed to go.  My family’s and my time of mourning occurred from when her casket was taken from the funeral home, through the ceremony, and up to when she was buried.  Other than that, we were celebrating that she had been released from pain and we celebrated being together.

My cousins, aunts and I had a great time swimming, wrestling, and drinkin beer last night!  While watching American Gladiators with the sound broken, my cousin Brian and I decided that Hulk Hogan doesn’t eat, he just absorbs Chuck Norris’ sweat!  Mary’s brothers exchanged stories about when they were teenagers, getting in trouble. 

The ceremony was very hard.  Seeing Mary’s three brothers and three sons (she has five kids) carry her casket was very sad.  I’m glad I was between my aunt Mudge (who’s awesome) and my mom – Mudge and I were able to be sad together and I appeased my mom for the time being (she later did her thing in the car). 

It was a Catholic mass, of course.  All the speakers (her husband’s brother, her sister’s brother, one of her brothers, and two Lutheran pastors from where she worked) said exactly what needed to be said about her.  I realized that I knew more about her than I thought – Mary was what a Christian should be.  She emulated Jesus/Mary in that she was very kind, charitable, forgiving, and positive.  I just wish I could say that the priest was as competant.  He began the homily by saying, “Only fools don’t believe in an afterlife.  Atheists are fools.”  WTF?!?!?!?!?  This is a frickin FUNERAL!  Mary prayed that atheists would find the joy that she found in her religion/spirituality but she would never call them fools!  I’m so happy I’m not Catholic so I don’t have to deal with the clergy anymore!

My mom and I drove in the funeral procession.  I went because I was having a very emotional time and I knew that going to that finalizing ceremony would help me get it all out.  I know it wasn’t finalizing in grieving and it wasn’t finalizing in the memory of Mary, but seeing that she was being put into her final resting place helped me pour out the rest of my sorrow.  Then, I was able to go to the basement of the church’s school to join in the celebratory feast.  Unfortunately, my mom decided it was time to leave.  I had to drive us back to Milwaukee, so I didn’t have much of an option.  And don’t get my started on my mom on the drive back . . .

So I’m back and I’m ready to get back into the swing of things maybe.