Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Project Heal: Capture Your Grief: Sacred Space

In an effort to ease my hurting heart this Fall, I am participating in Project Heal: Capture Your Grief . It's a photography/storytelling project to honor the babies we've lost.

Day 21: Sacred Space

When I was 7 years old, my class took a field trip to the cemetery. No, I'm not kidding. It was May and we were placing flowers on the graves of men who had died in WWII. I guess at some point, I got separated from my class. I don't remember "being lost", I do remember my teacher in tears because I guess she had spent about an hour looking for me.
"Weren't you scared?" my classmates asked.
I've never been scared of cemeteries, and aside from the year after Riley died, I've never been scared to go to them, or to stay in them for long periods of time.
For years, Ella and I would go to the cemetery on Fridays or Saturdays, and spend time making her sister's spot pretty. I think it helped us both feel close to Riley.
The week before we moved to North Carolina, I spent many, many hours at Riley's cemetery, as that was the place where I felt the safest.
This is not Riley's cemetery. I'm 700-something miles away right now. This is one of the cemeteries that is relatively near me. I go to the cemeteries here...sometimes alone, sometimes with Ella. We'll buy flowers and put them on the forgotten they're not forgotten. At the cemetery in town, we found a little girl who shares a birth day (though not a birth year) with my girls.
I don't know what it is about the cemetery. The quiet, the peace. I just feel safe and peaceful.

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