It was a long, drama filled 4 days. We left Saturday morning to drive to Pittsburgh and 7 hours later we arrived. The minute we got there hubby's italian aunts started feeding us, in times of crisis or happy times, italian grandmother types feed you and you just can't say no. If you decline to eat they will ask you every 5 minutes if you want something, it's easier to just eat it. So I probably gained 5lbs from 4 days of pasta, pastries, and wine.
The visiting hours at the funeral home were from 1-4 and 6-9 on Sunday. In those 6 hours over 600 people made their way through to pay respects. I was amazed, I've never seen anything like it. The deceased cousin had a 17 year old son and all of his friends came which was very touching. Her brother is a volunteer fire captain and the entire volunteer firefighter organization came, there had to be 3 dozen of them that came through all at once. Then there were friends of the deceased, friends of her parents, her husband, her sister, her brother - so many people came it was really touching.
The funeral on Monday was smaller - but very emotional as seems to be the tradition for Italian funerals. The funeral mass was interrupted when one of my husband's aunts (not the mother) collapsed. She had not slept, nor eaten for days and she had been dizzy that morning. She was white as a sheet, her heart was racing and she couldn't seem to catch a breath. We were not sure if it was a panic attack or her heart. They stopped the mass - she was taken out in an ambulance and taken to the hospital. The funeral resumed. We went from the church to the cemetery for the final part of the service and at this part there was a lot of wailing and crying and several people throwing themselves on the coffin. It is so hard to watch but at least I was not completely taken aback by it all since this is the 3rd family funeral I've attended and they have all gone this way. Finally the funeral was over - we were sent to the firehall for food/refreshments but instead we went to the hospital to check on his aunt. She was not well, her heart rate was going from 60-190 and back. Her blood pressure was much higher than it should be and then dropped dangerously low. Of course she was dehydrated and so her electrolytes were out of whack and her potassium was low from not eating. She was mortified that she ruined the funeral and being downright ornery not wanting to stay at the hospital. They ended up sedating her and she finally got some sleep - and they gave her potassium and fluids and later that evening she was looking so much better.
So finally Tuesday morning we left to come home. I'm tired and sore (missed the last step on some stairs on Monday night and fell flat on my face and really banged up my left knee and my shoulder is sore too) . I'm also very behind on spring cleaning and we are having company in 2 weeks time. And I had to use 2 personal days for this because spouse's cousin is not covered under bereavement leave. Luckily I have the time and my company is so extremely accommodating. But it's not how I planned to use my time! Oh well.