As you know, I can’t handle funerals and especially not “viewings”. Dead bodies make me nervous. I don’t know why ........ but I’m guessing it has something to do with the fact that ……HELLO! THEY’RE DEAD!
Today was the first of two days of torture for me because when I get nervous, I giggle like a loon. This proves most especially embarrassing if you are at a funeral where many of the family and friends don’t know you.
My plan for today was NOT to go near that casket. But, as luck would have it, I ended up with Miss Ellie (Bob’s mostly blind mother) duty. Ellie ALWAYS goes straight up to the casket. And there is ALWAYS a dead person in it. I tried to dissuade her. “Ellie,” I said, “your broken pelvis is still mending why don’t we just sit down here. It’s a long way up to the casket. And come on, it’s not like you can see anything anyway.” But noooooo. Ellie has to do the proper thing and pay her respects.
Up we went, closer and closer, until I could see the pink lining. I tried to just look aside at the flowers. I tried staring at the ceiling. Then Ellie says, “What’s that around her neck?”
“Did you look?”
“um. No. No. Not really.”
“Well would you?”
“I want to know what she’s wearing.”
“Whyyyyyyy? Are you gonna get one too? Oh, can’t we just go sit down?”
“What’s wrong with you,” she asks, getting irritated.
“Dead people freak me out,” I hissed back at her ..... just as the dead woman’s son came up behind us.
“Dude, I really liked your mom, lots. I did,” I told him in an effort to not seem like a total ass. “I just have this, phobia or something. I get nervous and……
on and on I went sounding more and more like a complete idiot while he just nodded and smiled.
“Now look what you’ve done, “ I told at Ellie as he walked away.
“I didn’t do anything,” she insisted. Carl’s deaf. He didn’t hear a word you said when he walked up.
“oh, thank goodness!”
“He reads lips.”
Crap. This meant that the comment I made as he was coming up behind us was safe but every thing I said directly to him….. well he may have gotten it. Looking over at him as he talked to his wife, I pretty much knew for a fact that …. oh yeah …. he definitely got it alright.
Enough humiliation for me? Nope. Not yet.
Ellie continued to bug me about whatever it was hanging on this gals neck. She absolutely refused to go sit down till I checked it out.
So I did. The nerves jingled and jangled like mad. I swear my belly rose right up to my throat. The braying jackass in my head was about to take over and with Ellie hanging onto my arm I could NOT get out of there to save myself.
In a family funeral, it's ok. They all know me. They know what’s gonna happen if I look and nobody really cares anymore. But this was different. I only know a couple of these folks.
I tried sooooo hard to just keep lips pressed tight together. I tried thinking of odd ball things, anything to get my mind offa the impending giggle fest.
But Ellie was merciless! “She looks better than I’ve seen her in a while.”
GET THE FUCK OUT! First, Ellie is blind! She can’t see crap. Second, how can a woman who is majorly dead, look better now than alive?
I lost it. I just lost it. I’m sorry. I know it’s wrong. I know it’s disrespectful but, I giggled so hard I got the hiccups.
And Ellie says, “What’s wrong with you? Oh, this is terrible. Do something. Think of something sad. You’re going to hurt their feelings. Do you want me to pinch you? Will that help?”
Tomorrow is the funeral. And last I heard, I haven’t been banned. Please let it be a closed coffin. Why, oh why, don’t people just let me skip these things?