I have gone to 3 funerals now. The most recent was yesterday at my aunt’s funeral.
I knew my aunt fairly well, I can recall many Christmas and family visits to her place and seeing my uncle. The two were inseparable and it is impossible to imagine one without the other.
I had known my aunt was undergoing treatment for most of 2016, but I was told that she was doing fine. Then, in August, she took a turn for the worst and I went back to visit her. If you haven’t done it, seeing an ordinarily healthy person be barely conscious in a hospital bed with multiple IV drips going into them can shock you. She was barely conscious for an hour before the morphine took hold and she drifted back to sleep. We decided to leave her on that.
She worsened over night and died peacefully the next day just before the evening. The family was in shock, my cousins and uncle devastated.
Fast forward to yesterday and the family were gathered to send her off. The priest spoke well of her and the family singing abide by me was moving, but her grandchildren all speaking poetry to us was, I found, deeply touching. My cousins and uncle were crying, the whole family was crying. My father, brother and mother were crying.
I, however, was not. Not out of spite or secret hatred for her. Not because I have no emotions, but I just don’t seem to cry at these events. Not at the coffin being carried out and amazing grace being played, or the grandchildren’s poetry, or the sight of everyone else.
Nobody said anything, but I think a few looked at me funny. I can understand. The event is as much an outpouring of emotion as it is of finally letting go.
I don’t know why I don’t cry. Maybe the shock will hit my afterwards. Maybe I still haven’t fully come to terms with it. I like to think that upon hearing the news and after seeing her, I had been mentally preparing myself for it so that I wouldn’t go to pieces.
I don’t know. This is the part where you call me selfish and say I’m making someone else’s tragedy all about me, when I’m merely putting thought into writing and leaving it open ended.