When I was 7-years-old the thought of visiting the cemetery scared me. Just like when I used to have my grandparents appear in my dreams, it would scare me, when really it should comfort me as a sign that they are looking over me.
The cemetery experience
I like to think of visiting the cemetery just as I would be when I visited their home. It might not be indoors sat on their couch but there’s nothing stopping you from chatting away. I would always talk away to granny and grandad about this, that, and everything. But mostly about school and what I had learnt that week.
Then a point in my life hit me where I was 13-years-old and I knew that I had to turn tears into something else, a more positive feeling. They were both gone now and there’s someone who could try to stay strong for everyone, perhaps it could be me?
Ever since, I’ve made sure I visit granny and grandad at the cemetery. Some people prefer not to visit at all, not because they don’t want to, but because they find it too difficult. Going more as I have gotten older has definitely helped me.
I chat to them about anything just like I always did in person. Smiling, I imagine grandad sat on the grass with his tartan patterned blanket and being fully equipped with everything you need to keep the plot clean and tidy.
How I feel today
Now, I like to think I can look after the both of them. They made it their mission to make sure we had the most of what life had to offer. I still go to them when I need help with something or I am praying to hear good news.
On Saturday 22nd July, it was grandad’s birthday and granny’s takes place this week on Thursday 26th July. I love that their birthdays are so close. I like being able to wish them a happy birthday on my visit. Thanking them for looking out for me especially as I got a new job a couple of months ago was important for me to do.
Whenever I feel sad, I think what they would tell me that, I need to be brave because there are lots of things to smile about.
They are with you
You don’t need to feel alone. They know how much you love them and that you’re trying your best to keep things together. Remembering that they are there can make it better. We feel sad because they aren’t there to hold our hand anymore but you can make the most of visiting them feeling a sense of inspiration from them.
Tears can be a sign of happiness
If you feel a year strolling down your face, think about why it’s there. Of course, it’s facing the fact that you won’t be able to laugh with them again and share more memories. But those tears are just a small drop of the hundreds of memories you shared together. Once you’ve shed so many tears, there is a chance that you begin to smile.
They couldn’t be prouder of you
You constantly want to make them proud and each time you visit, you want to share nothing but happy memories with them. Even when you are down or having a hard time, you know that they can take everything away. It’s nice to remember how they always made everything better.
The truth is, taking the strength to give them some company makes them proud on top of all of your great accomplishments.
It doesn’t matter how many years go by, you never forget those precious memories and the ones who you love the most.
Sometimes I laugh at the funny little habits they had. Other days I can be a lot quieter and wish for them to be able to hug be. But I’ll always remember the way they used.
Never take those kind of things for granted.
Find that inner strength you know is there inside you. Remember it is okay to cry. And most of all, give them the smile that you always had as soon as you saw their faces.