My mother's funeral was today. This morning at 9, when the Omega Society office in Santa Ana opened, we went to pick up her cremated remains to deliver them to the cemetery for her 2 PM funeral. When we got there, they did not yet have the remains. The man at the desk quipped that my mother was "fashionably late." That gave me a bit of a start; I had to restrain myself to keep from having a fit. The people in the office told us to go off and have coffee and come back in half an hour, so we did, and when we got back, they handed us the remains, neatly packaged in a white tote bag, dense and very very heavy. I guess I never expect the dust from a person's body to weigh nearly as much as that person, but it did. Sanitized as it was though, the plastic package did not feel like a person, though I knew where its contents came from.
Then we headed off to the board and care to pack as much as we could into the car. The caregiver, Susie, had thoughtfully packed everything up already in suitcases, tote bags, plastic garbage bags, and plastic storage boxes. All we needed to do was put them into the car. Another car load still awaits us, and Richard will pick it up tomorrow. It will have to sit in the empty room for another day before I am ready to sort it and decide what needs to go to a consignment store, what to a Goodwill, what to the trash, and what I will keep and treasure. I do not relish that job of sorting.
The funeral itself went off well, though the choir was not as complete as last time, and we were ill prepared to sing, even though we sang the same song as last time. I delivered my eulogy for mom, but Richard was talked out. We shoveled our dirt onto the small "coffin" containing the remains and went off to a restaurant for lunch.
Naturally, that did not go as smoothly as one would have hoped. Forgetting it was Friday afternoon, I first thought about going to the Kosher deli, nearby, but it was going to be closing soon for Shabbat. So I had a backup plan--Inka Mama, a Peruvian restaurant in Lake Forest. But when we drove over to it, there was a huge accident and the entire freeway was closed off. We couldn't get to the restaurant.
The others from the funeral party did make it, but they called and told me the restaurant was closed from 3-5. It was about 3 at that time, so I suggested a few other places. We finally chose another. but it took perhaps 30 minutes for everyone to arrive.
Now I feel drained. It has been almost a week and a half since this whole thing began. My dad had his thrombosis, if that's what it was, in the late afternoon on Memorial Day. He died on Weds. morning. I made the funeral arrangements that day. He was buried on Sunday, and my mother died that morning. What a lot can happen in a short time.