Travel Journal (May 14th-Day Six): The Funeral
It was just the way he would have wanted it
Not too fancy
He was like his older sister in that way,
Celebrate me while I’m alive;
Give me my flowers when I’m living
I can’t really see them when I’m dead.
I know he is in a better place.
He doesn’t have to feel the cancer
Eating away at his body anymore.
He doesn’t have to deal with the bickering
Nor tolerate the façades;
Only God truly knows
If my mom could make up
For lifetimes of neglect
In those last three weeks.
The force field between my mom
And everyone else continues…
Originally, Uncle Trent was going to ride with us, but opted to ride with Joanna.
I’m not sure what is going on with them.
She stepped up during the time Grandpa got really sick, offered her assistance after Grandpa’s passing. I never was too fond of her because of how nosy she was and how much hell she had put Uncle Trent through. She spent many years as Uncle Trent’s other woman. She kept doing things to Jill, Kitana’s mom, until she eventually became the main woman. Then, the two of them had a run in with the law years back.
After that, they broke up and she threw him out of her house.
You would think after that, Uncle Trent would have not looked back.
But grief makes you do some strange things.
I guess he needed to seek comfort somewhere. He couldn't rely on Grandma; she was dealing with her own grief. Jill and he were not on good terms. So I guess Joanna was the obvious choice.
So someone went to check to see if my mom and my sisters wanted to ride with us. Grandma wasn't too particular about it, but she was feeling too sad to argue. So they tagged along. I’m not sure if my mom or Quasha went to touch my hair but I yelled at them not to touch it. It was bad enough they were in the limo.
Then, in the church, a little debate on who was sitting with who. Aunt Carol sat on the left of Grandma; I sat on the right. Mom opted to sit right next to me. No one bothered to sit next to her but went on to the next row. Across the way, I noticed Miss Gloria sitting by herself; I thought it was a little strange she would just sit by herself.
It was a very emotional day, lots of tears.
But my sister, Karmen, and my mom stole the show. They don’t get along well, I believe, because they are too much alike. Karmen went into a hysterical fit . My mom had a breakdown and was clinging to me for dear life.
I wanted to pull away because I sensed Grandma needed me much more. Like Aunt Carol kept saying, “I had to be the strong one.”
It made me feel as if I didn’t have permission to grieve. Like my grieving process had to be put on hold. She probably did not mean it in that way, but I had gotten so used to my dealing with things to be put off until later, it was almost like second nature.
I boxed up the remainder of my tears for the time being.
It was nice seeing the military there to give their condolences. That was the only time when I dared to take a picture…with them there next to the casket. As well as some pictures with the flag and the program.
Grandma and I were in the same boat. We didn’t really feel like going back to the church; we weren’t even told whether there would be refreshments or not. Either way, we didn’t have much appetite.
It was decided that the limo would drop us off at the house and those who wanted to go to the church could just get in their cars and go. My mom and my sisters decided to go to the church. Grandma and the rest of us stayed put.
So many people came to visit and spend time with Grandma. At first, it was all right, but after a while, I was feeling a bit overwhelmed. I had never seen so many cars in the driveway and the yard area (well over 10). I got to where I didn’t feel like socializing. I needed an escape.
I texted Zack and asked him what he was up to. He said not much; he had gotten a hotel room for the weekend and was going to start on his move soon. I told him I hadn’t too long gotten out of the funeral but I was feeling a bit overwhelmed, if it was okay that I stopped by. He told me, “Yeah.”
So while the crowd was around, I snuck away. I just prayed that Grandma would understand.
I got there and was able to talk with Zack about everything I was going through; he treated me to McDonald’s, since it was across the street from the hotel. He made the mistake of letting his soon to be ex-wife know that he and I were hanging out. She wouldn’t stop calling and texting his phone.
I offered to just leave, since my being around him was an issue, but he pleaded with me to stay, so I did.
After a while, he started getting tired. I asked him if I could use his laptop. I had left mine’s in Jersey, and I wanted to get some writing done. He told me that I could, as long as I could bring it back to him the next day or Monday; I was like okay. He started to get comfortable, wanted to know if I could hang out a while longer. If I wanted to, I really could have; I didn’t want to deal with all of the dynamics. I was already annoyed with his ex-wife bugging him, and the aspect of that for even longer wasn’t something I was emotionally equipped to entertain.
I made my way back. The crowd of cars were gone. Not too many noticed I had slipped away; I just said I needed some air. Zack checked to see if I had made it back all right; I told him that I had, but I was going to bed.
Sleep was a very long time coming…