I haven't been back to Jerry's grave site yet. His daughter and I plan on riding up there with the restored "55 Bel Air he never got to drive and blast him some Freebird! I'm not really looking forward to that. I wanted to go first alone, when his plaque is in place because seeing that will hit me hard. Apparently, it's going to be 90 days for that and she want's to go ahead and take the car up there. So, I'm waiting her call for that gut wrenching ride.
I have big plans to keep the flowers looking good etc. but, as life happens I'm sure like most people I know, it will taper off as time goes on. I was wondering how many of us keep those flowers fresh, how often you really go to the site and make sure it's neat, cleaned up and looking good? Has time effected how often you go? When you're there, do you get a sense of acceptance or does it flood you with overwhelming feelings?
My plan is to go once a month and change out the flowers. Not just on Jerry's but his wife's as well. I don't want them mismatched :) They are in a, I guess it's a mausoleum. It's a big wall thing with lots of spaces. Thankfully they are at the bottom and I don't have to take a ladder with me to change the flowers. Part of me is filled with trepidation, I don't want to see his name etched in bronze. It's too real. The other part wants to honor both him and his wife and make sure both graves are adorned with fresh flowers.
HI Rainy, I go about 4 or 5 times a year. His grave is in another town, where we lived for almost 20 years. I moved two years ago but it only takes me 20 minutes or so to go. I don't put fresh flowers but silk flowers. They hold up pretty well. I have about 4 different arrangements, one even for his birthday in July.
It is hard to see his name but then I smile because my brother carved the stone and all of my siblings helped me with it should say. It's very simple and I am sure will cause lots of speculation in the future. Long story there. It is a marble stone so it is quite beautiful.
I had planned to go more often but i just don't have time. I try to do it at least seasonally.
Hope this helps. Hugs.
Thanks, Susan. I'm just being nosy and wondering what everyone else does.
You have to find your comfort level.
Janet is in the family graveyard on the property about 300 feet from the house. I can see it from the side door.
If I had her someplace else I would be travelling there every day. But that's just me.
Susan is buried at Fort Logan National Cemetery which in the Denver area. To get into town for grocery shopping, errands, and other things, I drive right past the entrance and for years I would stop every time I went into town which was usually once a month or every other month. Then, when cutting time short or running late, as I drove by I would talk to her and tell her I loved her as I sped by at 65mph. After 6 years, it has tapered off to where I feel ashamed for not stopping and have the flimsiest excuses for not stopping. Sometimes Life seems to get in the way of the best intentions.
Thanks for the nudge, I am going to resume my visits.
I go every Sat. and Sun. i've kept it up even since I retired. Once in a while, I miss going if I'm busy. There are a couple of flower shops near the cemetery and I buy a bouquet from one of them. The cemetery is in East Los Angeles, maybe 5 - 10 miles from my house. The traffic isn't that bad on the weekends.
I don't think there is any right or wrong number of times one must visit the cemetery. Same goes for the way you feel when visiting. It's more about what's right for you and where you are at mentally. For example, I practically lived at our cemetery the first year. I was out there 5 or 6 days a week in the beginning sometimes more than once per day. As for where I was at mentally, in the beginning I was a wreck. Sometimes when I was out there it got quite dangerous; I contemplated taking my own life twice in the 1st 3-months after loss at the cemetery. Had it not been for Widowed Village and the people on here, I likely wouldn't be here today. On Widowed Village I made some of the best friends I'll ever have and we had exchanged phone numbers. One day scared as hell and holding a .40 cal. pistol I called a lady from Widville who I virtually met in chat. She happened to be a Lt. with Orange Co., CA Police. She talked me through the process of piece by piece dismantling that Glock pistol I took on the job as my back-up weapon. We're to this day and forever Best Friends. Guess what, I don't go to the cemetery anymore when I'm in a bad place. Because of the job then I always have at least 2-weapons on me or close at hand due to the risk of people retaliating. Thank God I don't have that job anymore. It took me at least 6 months to go to the cemetery and not cry. But as big as that was my smile went right to tears because I got a bad case of guilt for not loving my wife Darlene enough to still be upset. No winning in grief ! Ughh.
It was about the 2 year mark before I got a headstone. Just picking out a stone and design again reduced me to tears. Thankfully I took my fiancee Tamela and she was my rock. Then the day I went to the cemetery and there (no warning ) was the headstone in place - I again was reduced to a blubbering crying mess.
Cemeteries are a place full of landmines (figuratively) or triggers. With that in mind I still to this day 4-years out ( in 5-days ) go to the cemetery once a week. This is just what works for me. Also, every milestone our 2 daughters reach I have to go to the cemetery and tell Darlene all about it. And guess where I'm at typing this reply ? You guessed it, the cemetery.
p.s. I always take pictures of her grave. I can play a sideshow and watch the crops and seasons litterally change. Along with this ritual I play our wedding song at some point in the visit.
Try using Silk Flowers. For Christmas, I bought Silk Poinsettas. They looked great!
I visit every morning, first thing, 7 am or earlier. Nobody there but me, her and sometimes the geese and the deer. On Sundays, the 10th of every month (Arlene passed on June 10th) along with anniversaries and her birthday, I leave her white roses, which were her favorite. It really does no good to plant there because the deer eat the flowers, usually they only last a day or so before they get eaten. I did come up with a solution, I went to Michaels and bought fake white roses, and put them in a pot with dirt in front of her stone, this way, she will always have her favorite there. The pot is plastic, because glass and ceramic break in low tempretures. I also have 2 strings of Mardi Gras beads on top of her stone, (she loved that holiday) along with a daily rock from our yard, and a rock from each place that I have visited since she passed (the tradition in the Jewish religion is to leave a rock on the stone). Once the weather breaks, I plan to show up with a rake to make her area a bit neater.
Don, I've seen rocks on markers before and have always wondered why. I keep getting educated around here.
I'll use silk flowers, by fresh I meant, not faded out and torn up from the sun.
Liz's Urn is in plain sight in the living room.. I talk to her almost everyday.
Ron's ashes are in an urn on my mantel, and the box is wrapped in one of his favorite shirts. (The priest offered to put a pall, or white cloth, over it at the funeral and I said no, I want them in his shirt!)
So, I see them every day. The closest I get to a graveside visit is when I deposit some of his ashes somewhere. Those of you who have read this already, please bear with me- but so far I've deposited his ashes in the lake behind our house, the Panama Canal, off the coast of Costa Rica, in Iceland and in the Missouri River near our favorite B&B. I always stop, say a prayer and write a few words first. Next month bits of him will go into the Ganges and somewhere in Kathmandu. It's always a bit sobering to face his earthly remains as I parcel some of them into a trial-size Gold Bond Medicated Powder bottle before a trip. (Some countries have laws about treatment of human remains- don't want to raise any red flags.)
i find going to the cemetery to be a sobering reminder that life is limited and you have to make the most of the days you have left. I think too many people tend to think that things will just keep going but we here at widville all know that eventually they don't keep going. It its own way, my cemetery visits inspires me..