current state of mind: practically perfect in every way
Roll around this roundabout
Take me to our best friend’s house
I loved you then and I love you now
~ ‘Tongue Tied’ by Group Love
It should be noted that I do not like cemeteries; even at funerals, I seldom get out of the car to stand graveside. There is one exception to this blanket “no cemetery” rule. Two to three times a year, I visit one grave to leave flowers, pull some weeds, and ‘have a chat’ per se. Yesterday, I left a bouquet of white flowers. The weather was cold and rainy; fitting weather for the 21st anniversary of a child’s death. Unlike in years past, however, I knew that I would likely be the only visitor of the day. I took great care in removing all of the weeds growing around the marker stone and verified that the decorations around the stone were anchored securely, so as not to fall over. Once the obligatory ‘chores’ were finished, I followed the same pattern that I have followed since that first visit so many years ago. I traced my fingers over the raised letters of the stone. I touched his portrait, protected by plexi-glass, and I told him how very much he is missed and loved. As always, before leaving, I whispered a short prayer, more for my sake than his, and I walked away.
This ritual is one I have followed so many times before, yet it never loses any of its significance to me. I don’t ‘just go through the motions’. Each act is deliberate and thoughtful. For years, I did these things because I was filled with such sadness that the ceremonial visits were the only way I could release some of the pain. Now, I do them because his father has joined him and his mother has moved away to be closer to her living family. It means a great deal to me to know that when his mother returns to her son’s resting place that it is in a condition which shows that her son has not been forgotten.
My ‘own’ children are 14; the same age as I was when the loss of a friend irreparably changed my life. Four years ago I sat in my apartment, surrounded by boxes and I wrote about my friend and guilt and unfulfilled promises. http://geniusinwonderland.blogspot.com/2008/04/cobwebs-and-dark-days.html Since that posting, I have been granted multiple opportunities to live and love – and I have chosen to pull some people closer when I would have rather pushed them away. I am still afraid, sometimes, of losing people; and I feel compelled to ask for reassurance from those I love. Overall, however, I have lived a promise two decades in the making. And for that I am grateful.
PUBLIC NOTE: Forgive yourself for something out of your control and hug someone because you can.
PERSONAL NOTE: Things could be worse. You could live with her. Oh, wait, you do. Hahahahaha
CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: Now you know why I don’t filter even when I should. I cannot wait to see you.