Yesterday was incredibly sad. The sight of the baby in a coffin is one of the most awful things I've ever seen. It was heartbreaking. And seeing how destroyed my cousin and his wife were was hard to take in. I've been to many funerals (a perk of having a huge family) but this was by far the saddest.
As is Muslim custom, the viewing at the funeral home was brief, with a short talk given by the Imam. After, we all went to the burial ground for prayers graveside. We each gathered a handful of earth, split it in three, and tossed it into the grave. My cousin and other male relatives began to fill the grave. Then the back hoe came. That part is awful, watching this huge machine fill in the grave. And it takes a long time. I stood there with my cousins. It was comforting to have them there.
My paternal grandmother (who passed away in January) is buried not far from the baby's grave. After the funeral, a bunch of uncles, aunts, and cousins walked over to see her. One of my cousins pointed out that her grave site number, 130, is easy to remember because her birthday is January 30. I thought that was sweet. And it does help. The first time I went to visit her, I couldn't find her. I had forgotten her number. (Her permanent marker isn't in place yet. We have to wait until the ground settles because it's a flat marker, not a large headstone.)
Afterward, we all went to my cousin's house for food and company. A bunch of cousins wanted to go to the movies, so I joined them. It was nice spending time with them and sharing a much needed laugh. It made the day bearable. I only wish the circumstances of us hanging out could have been happier. It seems like I only get to see most of them at funerals.
So that was my Tuesday. And me being me, I had a huge headache the whole time. I took pain killers before we went to the movies and got pretty loopy. I think my cousins were amused.
I completely forgot this part! Between the burial and my cousin's house, my sister and I went to buy samosas and pick up the nieces. We went to Shalimar in Edison. Because I hadn't really eaten, I ordered a samosa and butter chicken to eat while our order was being made. My sister went out to park the car and saw two of my cousins on Oak Tree.
I was sitting at a table next to a young black lady with a baby in a stroller. We started chatting. She was having difficulty eating while holding the baby, so I offered to hold him while she ate, since I was done and just sitting there waiting. She gladly handed over the little guy. So I bounced him around and chatted with him while she ate. I noticed he had a bandage on his arm so I asked if he was ok. She said he has thalassemia
and had just come from the doctor's office for tests. I asked how old he was. She said he will be 4 months on September 5. I almost started crying. The baby who's funeral I had just attended would have been 4 months on September 6. It was an incredible coincidence.