It is four o’clock in the morning, and I have not been able to sleep for days. Thoughts fill my head of February last year. I will travel to Dallas this week to pick up my daughter and her children, just as I did twelve months ago. That visit was filled with stress and anguish as I sorrowfully met my daughter and her family at the passenger gate and then claimed the body of my deceased grandson at the airline’s cargo bay. Our family drove to East Texas with our precious little boy, protected by his tiny casket, tethered in the back of my van.
At the funeral home, I held his lifeless body and prepared him for burial. Serving and protecting my grandson was such a sweet blessing to my broken heart. I do not know how my daughter survived his death. At times, I wondered if I could muster the strength to continue breathing. Being his funeral director forced me to summon fortitude that I did not know I possessed. It was my highest honor.
Returning home will be bittersweet for my daughter. This will be her first visit to her son’s grave since his burial. The sadness of his death remains her constant companion and seeing his grave on the anniversary of his death may be very difficult.
Grief BRIEF 110 – FIRST VISIT
One’s first visit to the gravesite after burial can be a great cause of stress. One may be fearful of increased feelings of sadness and depression. If you suffer such fears, plan a short visit – perhaps 5 minutes or less. (Mourning Light, 2016, Tracy Renee Lee)
Physically touching his grave and visiting her deceased child will usher in healing for her. She will have the opportunity to talk to him and to express her love and longing for him. It will give her a gift that she has not yet had – the gift of being with her son, Mikey Joe, for more than a moment.
Grief BRIEF 108 – THERAPEUTIC
Visiting the gravesite can be very therapeutic. It gives private time for reflection and communion. (Mourning Light, 2016, Tracy Renee Lee)
She and her children will visit us for four months. Mikey Joe is buried here at our funeral home so she will visit with him every day. She does not know it yet, but she will treasure most sacredly this time they will share together. We will celebrate his birth, mourn his death, and traverse the road to recovery together as a family.
This week I will travel to Dallas to pick up my daughter and my sweet grandchildren. Gratefully, I will only visit the passenger gate and bypass the airline’s cargo bay. I will be so happy to see them, hold them, and kiss them over and over, and over again.
My name is Tracy Renee Lee. I am a Certified Grief Counselor (GC-C), Funeral Director (FDIC), published author, syndicated columnist, and co-founder of the “Mikey Joe Children’s Memorial” and Heaven Sent, Corp. I write books, weekly bereavement articles, and Grief BRIEFs related to understanding and coping with grief. I am the American Funeral Director of the Year Runner-Up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award.
It is my life’s work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on.
For additional encouragement, read other articles or watch video “Grief Briefs,” please go to my website at www.MourningCoffee.com.