Colby's uncle died last week. He was 81 and had 7 children and 15 grandchildren. His funeral is going on right now and I should be there. Instead, I'm at a coffee shop 2 miles down the road waiting the service out. I sort of knew that it was going to be hard, but I couldn't quite put my finger on why. I've never met this person and the last time Colby saw him, he was 11. We got a call from Colby's dad on Thursday. Actually, Colby sent it to voicemail and Thursday night we listened to the message that said that he and Jason, Colby's brother, were in the midst of driving down to Texas from Michigan and that they'd be in the state on Friday and the funeral was Saturday.
Colby and I made the trek to Richmond, TX, just outside of Houston, this morning. It only occurred to me enroute that this was going to be flashback inducing. Colby's grandparents are the oldest non-religious people I've ever met. I've never met anyone before whose grandparents weren't religious. It was a little bit strange, but I attribute that to my incredibly Catholic upbringing. The thing is, though, that these are his maternal grandparents. His dad's side is all Catholic and this was going to be a Catholic service. I prepped Colby about the proper way to make the sign of the cross (spectacles, testicles, watch, wallet), what happens during a mass (DO NOT under ANY circumstances try to receive communion, you heathen). It was only then that I realized that the last Catholic funeral I attended was my mom's. This was going to be the stuff of emotional napalm.
I convinced myself that as long as the service was different, it was going to be okay. Apparently all Catholic funeral services are the same. The song of the opening precession was the same. As long as they didn't play "On Eagle's Wings" I was going to be okay, but that was the second song. At that point there were tears. Totally inappropriate tears for my mom, at someone else's funeral. And then I left. And now I'm sitting at a coffee shop. It's probably the only independent coffee shop in Richmond, TX if Richmond is the way Kyle describes it. And the coffee is pretty good.
So the next time you find yourself in Richmond, TX avoiding a Catholic funeral because it's way too much like your mom's, go to Mugz. They make a good latte.