For me it has a completely different meaning. DJ was buried on Friday the 13th of October 2006. For the rest of my life I will not associate black cats and ladders with this date. I will remember trying to hold DJ's hand while he was in the casket and his hand feeling hard. I will forever remember the church, the people, the weather, the casket, his outfit, my children, the limo ride, the food after, the lone flower that came home with me instead of my son. The list goes on and on as I know it does for so many of you. I will associate this day with the worst day of my life for the rest of my life.
Why do I bring this up to you all today? Because we all have THAT day. Or THOSE days. The many days that are associated with our children's death. The day of an accident or the date of a diagnosis. The day of the phone call, of a doctor's visit. The day of entering the hospital, the day of picking out our children's clothes to be buried in. Again, the list goes on and on.
What so many people who do not have such a death don't understand is that the day of the death is not the only day we the bereaved remember. And because of that the anniversary dates of all those lists can take a long time to process. We may be down and out for a week before the anniversary or a week or two after. We may go into a whole on a day that seems completely nonsensical to the outsider but not to us. One day is not enough for us to mourn our child, to remember them. There are so many days that are connected to our child that so many do not understand. And for that reason, we just can't "get over it". Forever and ever there will be days in that 365 day calender that will remind us of our child's death. It doesn't matter if it is 25 years later or 2 weeks after the death--forever and ever days remind us that our child is no longer with us.
Be careful and aware of these dates as they come up. The anticipation of the date is almost always worse than the actual date but don't let it side swipe you!! And if you are reading this and have not lost a child or loved one--I challenge you to be more compassionate and kind to us when we just don't seem like ourselves. Because in all rationality we will never be ourselves again and you have no idea what the calender is saying to our hearts on any given day.
I wanted to remind you all that my book website has changed to flowersonachildsgrave.com--a computer spider stole my old address but has not made my book any less available--just relocated.
Flowers on a Child's Grave is a compilation of 14 familie's interviews of how they survived the loss of their child from ages 20 min to 35 years of age and how it affected everything from their marriage, intimacy, siblings, etc. I wrote it after a woman compared the loss of her dog to that of DJ and I didn't want that to happen in the future for any parent. God Bless you all today and take a look at your calender and be kind to yourselves--- Lisa--forever DJ's mom