Memorial weekend used to mean something different when I was growing up. It was picnics and get togethers, the smell of hamburgers on the grill, and lilacs in the air.
For a long time now – for me, it is a tough time of year and for the past 12 years (I can’t believe it has been 12 years) this melancholy state holds on from now through the first week of June. This is a time of great reflection and remembering, the happy memories I hold close that seem to make me a little sad.
Today I picked out the flowering plants to honor and remember my family. At my dad, mom, and sisters grave I place these baskets with great care, turning them this way and that until I am satisfied with how they look. I lean against the tree that my mom had planted there 28 year ago and am in awe of its size. Against my back it feels strong and warm and while my grief rises, my heart whispers, “Be Still…”
I always think of my sister Tara during this time. I calculate the math and know that in a week she would have been 34. 34! I like to imagine what she would be like. I picture her all adult and I believe she would have children, which would make me an aunt! We would be close and talk often on the phone and share the bond of having lost our parents. She would be doing something great with her life, saving the world in her own soft way…
I go to where my Great Grandmother was laid to rest and as I reach for my plants out of the back of my vehicle and I see four elderly women huddled down together at a grave site, chatting amongst themselves as they work their plants in the ground. I wonder who they are respecting… a close friend, a relative? How incredible for them to share this time of rememberance together. I want to take a picture of them to hold this memory… but I don’t want to intrude or spoil their moment.
Instead, I grab my notebook from the back seat and sit on the bench that is my Grandmother’s grave marker. She herself had requested a bench so people would sit and stay a while… so I do. And as I do I start doccumenting in my notebook this great feeling of peace I have being here and the moments my heart is capturing through the benefit of my eyes.
I watch the four women as they move to another grave site and start their process over again. It does not appear to be a painful one as they smile and laugh and are enjoying their time together.
I think back to last evening as I left the Franklin Art Center Building around 9:00 p.m. and noticed a group of five musicians had gathered on the steps and grass and were softly playing beautiful music. There was a chello and a couple guitars as well as a flute player. It was amazing to see.
I asked them what brought them here and they said they were just a group of friends enjoying a nice evening together with their songs. I watched for awhile wanting to capture this moment too.
Four elderly women chatting while they plant flowers in Evergreen cemetary and a group of happy musicians playing their hearts out on the lawn. These captured moments are what I love about this town. I long for these scenes to be the norm… a song on every corner, a group of women getting together with the memory of an old friend…. and me, thanking God again for the wonderful people I had in my life as well as the blessing of those He has placed with me now.
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.