He was five years old. Died of aspiration (the entry of secretions or foreign material into the trachea and lungs ) after vomiting in the night. He was a mouth breather, maybe his nasal passages weren't fully formed, i don't know. Been in and out of foster care all of his life. Mom hadn't seen him the past couple years, busy working and drugging. I tried to dislike her, I really did. The social worker found her almost a week after he died after going from place to place and asking if she worked there. His was the stripper funeral. The boy was the victim. The mom was the stripper. His brain never fully formed due to the drugs while in utero. Schewan and I were so angry with her. What kind of person could this woman be. Obviously a monster. The anger was short lived. Mom's been on her own since she was 12, eeking out a living however she could. Her mother is a mental patient herself due to her own overdose. It's overwhelmingly sad and the anger (sort of) dissipated. Still anger for the boy, but not so much directed towards the mom. The social worker fought like you wouldn't believe for funding for the boy's service and burial. We've yet to see the money, but we did get a fax that the state is paying. It's weird. I feel like I'm rambling. I had to measure him for the casket. Schewan was out, so Skip helped me. He was the same size as my 3 year old grandson. Thick curly hair and eyelashes to die for. I wanted to hug him. Instead I measured him, then left his face uncovered, and we pushed his shelf back into the fridge. Babies don't belong on refrigerator shelves.
She wore a long black dress to the funeral. She came early, right when we opened. Going back and forth about whether she wanted to view him. Schewan made her. Well, she didn't make her, just explained how beneficial it would be, if she even just saw his hand, something so that her eyes could tell her heart that he was gone. She brought in a carload of teddy bears. We put them all around the casket. It was only us in the building, Schewan, me, Mom, and social worker. I wanted to leave the building myself. She went into the chapel and Schewan went with her to the front. Schewan held her for awhile until Mom had the courage to stand by herself. Then Schewan came out and the wailing began. Deep gutteral grief. Keening is the word that keeps coming into my mind. I can hear it still as if it were happening as I type. I can't erase the sound. It's inside me and it keeps replaying and i can't make it stop. It's not my grief, I keep reminding myself. Let go of it. The service went well. Odd and sometimes inappropriate, but well. Everyone left except the social worker, who was helping us pick up all the bears, everyone brought one. Schewan couldn't make the toy work. It was a musical thing and Mom wanted us to put it in the casket, so that when he was buried, the music would still be playing. We couldn't make it work, so i found a screw driver, removed the battery cover and put in new batteries. I turned it on and music finally played. I was trying so hard to put the cover back on, but my hands were shaking and I started sobbing. The social worker had stepped into my office, but then didn't know what to say, so she apologized and stepped back out. The mother's keening mixed with the music box "twinkle, twinkle little star" in my head and I couldn't make it stop. Apparently, I wasn't the only one struggling, cuz Schewan was teary as well. I put the toy in his casket and we pushed him out to the coach (hearse). The social worker thanked me. I told her to fight for the live ones as hard as she's fought for this one. She promised she would. Schewan drove him to the cemetery. The music played as the dirt dropped down.