A year after my dad died, I realized that I’d thought about him every single day. He was everywhere – in the sky, on the radio, flowers, in people I talked to, the buildings he created, scents, images, sounds and memories flooded to me every day. Others would bring up a random memory or story to share.
I’d write these down in my notebooks, art journal or photograph images.
Then, I thought, how selfish. My mother might find healing in perusing this page – for savoring the memory of someone you love can bring more joy than pain, over time.
As the the one year anniversary approached, I began to fear that year two would generate fewer memories each day. I didn’t want that to happen. I didn’t want to ever forget. This worried me. I didn’t want others to forget him either. I also needed my grandchildren to know who he was.
I wanted to cultivate an intentional practice of honoring the memory of my dad each and every day possible. Just the smallest of tokens matter.
I did a little research and discovered a site by Alison Gilbert and her book, Passed and Present. She writes about how the intentional act of remembering our loved ones who have passed on actually makes you happier. This against against old wisdom that we need to move on and learn to live without them. Nope, not doing that.
So, I’m going to work at this. I have a years worth of notebooks filled with thoughts, memories and captured observations. It will take me a year to get to go back and find the gems to share here as tokens, AND continue to add the new whispers that comes my way.
I hope, that over time, more joy can happen here than tears.
But, tears are good, too.
It means I loved with all my heart.