my father-in-law died almost five years ago. i was there when he died, but my husband was sitting in cuba, waiting for a flight. my husband made it for the funeral, but there was so much disconnect between when he last saw his dad and then attending the funeral that i’m not sure my husband adequately processed all of it. he’s not been to visit dad’s grave and it still feels like we just don’t see dad because he’s working or because we live too far away. or maybe it always feels like that?
anyway, that’s why this post intrigues me and i’m hoping more suggestions will come. i’d love to find some way to honor the life of such a great man or at least to attempt to heal some of our still open wounds.]]>
The only other significant death in my life that really affects me is my high school girlfriend who died in a car accident. We weren’t close when she died. She was engaged to another guy and I was engaged to my wife. But even so, that one hurt and still hurts sometimes. Her family was kind enough to let me have a Winnie the Pooh that I gave her when we were dating. I don’t really know what to do with it, but I keep it and I remember her often. I hope we can be friends again.
We used to go to my dad’s first wife’s grave on Memorial days, I think, but it seems like the last time we did that as a family I was in my early teens. I don’t know if he still goes there. On what would have been their 50th anniversary or something my Mom arranged a little something for my dad and my half-siblings.]]>
Glenn, that’s a nice idea.
Meems, sorry to hear about your grandpa. All of my grandparents have passed on, too.]]>
Many of them were/are very funny and make me smile. And now, in those times when my thoughts turn to him (whether it is memorial day, or his birthday, or the anniversary of his death, or if I just see someone of something that reminds me of him), I have that written tribute to turn to, and there are times when a memory comes to me that I hadn’t recorded, so I will add it. I occasionally share those stories with other friends, or my wife and kids. That is the best way I have found to honor his memory.]]>
He’s only been gone six years now this May, so I still think of him often. I dream of him frequently. I’m living in the house that he lived and died in, and his stuff is still around, so it’s easy to feel that he’s still here, just gone out for a bit. At first my heart would betray me when a car came down the hill, and tell me it was my parents coming home to this house I bought from Mom when it got too much for her to manage. Occasionally, I still do that thing where I think “Oh, I’ll ask Dad about that” or “Dad would love this, I’ll tell him about it”, but it’s become rare.
I think being a Latter Day Saint has made the process of grieving much easier for me than for my unconverted siblings. They aren’t comfortable with the thought of our Dad, because it’s too sad for them. They are reluctant to meet over here, and we usually go somewhere else for family gatherings. But because I know my father lives, and I even hope someday I can do his temple work (if my mom relents), I still feel a close connection there. I feel more his daughter now than I did when he was alive, even. I love him more and we communicate better, though that makes me laugh to say it. It’s true. =)
It would be sad if all that fades over time, so I think I will take your suggestion and begin observing el dia de los muertos each year. Here’s the wikipedia article on it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Day_of_the_Dead]]>