Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How Do You Do Those First Anniversaries After...?

The warmth and happiness roses.

I was going to write something upbeat and positive today, but I don't know that I'm going to achieve that.

Tomorrow, Justin's mom and dad would have been married 49 years. I know my mother-in-law has been dreading this first anniversary without Justin's dad and Justin is pretty emotional about her having to go through it. These are the times that I wished we lived closer.

While I was eating my lunch (cheesecake - don't judge me, life sucks sometimes and cheesecake makes it better), Justin came to me and asked if I thought we should send his mom flowers tomorrow, even though it's quite expensive to do it. He also asked me what we should put on the card.

You see, every year, his dad would get his mom a dozen yellow roses. Yellow roses are the friendship rose, and that is so very appropriate, since they were always the best of friends. In fact, I'm sure she'd love it if he was around so she could yell at him for no longer being around. But yellow also stands for warmth and happiness and I know that he would really want her to be warm and happy.

So we picked out an FTD arrangement and I made the purchase, even though it wasn't in the budget. There are some things more important than money and this is one of them. A great big one of them.

He wasn't sure whether it would upset her or not to get the roses tomorrow, but I think if it was me, I would be very comforted that my children remembered this tradition. I am also hoping that she is more touched than upset. It's so hard to navigate all those first anniversaries after such a huge loss.

I think that yellow roses are the best gift we could give her on this first anniversary without her husband. I know how much his loss is hurting her. I can't imagine losing Justin and we've been married for almost 24 years. Losing a spouse after almost 49 years of marriage...well, I just can't imagine what that must be like.

She left the shoes he took off the day of his heart attack last year - they haven't been moved since.

I took this after the funeral in July and put it into her shadow box.

They're still waiting there for him.

Losing someone so important to you is an indescribable loss. There has been so much tragedy in the past year of our lives. I keep thinking it has to get better and it seems like it's just getting worse. How do we face such huge losses or potential losses without losing our minds?

Nothing too inspiring here today. I'm just very sad about everything.


  1. I lost my father and grandma two days apart last year combined with other loss over the past two years. I keep going on even when i think I can't bare it. My perception on loss and what is fair changed a lot. I have my days but overall the intense pain isnt there that at one time it was. It is just dull pain. Life can and does get worse for some people . Hate to sound cynical.

  2. Kristy,

    I am so sorry for your losses. I think it's just a day to day thing until the pain isn't quite as intense and in your face. Sometimes you just have to make it through the next breath.


  3. All I can say is the pain gradually lessens with time, and it helps to talk about the person. My Dad died in '84 and the month after my Mum discovered she had bowel cancer. The Doctor got it all in the first op., but it came back and she died in '88. My first child was born 9 months later. It has been REALLY hard and I do sympathize. I think sending the flowers was a lovely idea.
    I've already been married longer than my parents were as they were married for 22 years.
    I hope you feel better soon. (The shoes really got to me - how sad).

  4. I am so sorry about your mom and dad. I almost lost my mom to cancer last year and it was horrible. I am praying that she stays in remission.

    I think we're going to make the flowers an annual tradition, as she was very touched.

    And yes, the shoes picture breaks my heart every time I look at it. We put it in the shadow box I made her for Christmas. I'm making another one for Justin with a picture of his dad and some of the flowers from the funeral. I'm thinking the shoes needs to go in that too.



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