Grandaughter's 1st birthday without a father

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Posted by Susan ( on July 26, 2000 at 17:51:10:

I have shared most of my life story and especially the death of my son with you all but I would like to share this particular story in the hopes that it may benefit someone out here. I have lost a son but his children have lost their father which I am not sure which is more devesting. I wrote this to Grace but I am going to share this with all of you. My Kayla turned 12 on the 17th of this month and the next day, 18th was her father's six month anniversary since he died. Her love for her father is as great as my own love but she is just a little girl so I tried to turn this around and this is the following. I bought her gifts from me but also bought her gifts and a birthday card from her father. I picked her up on the 18th and asked her what the date meant and she told me so we both headed for the cementary and we sat together where we would like someday for him to be. We cried, we laughed, we shared stories of him and I had brought some ashes that had been blessed and she spread them where she wanted to.
We looked at headstones together and both of us had friends there and we put flowers on them all and then left and spent the rest of the day 100 miles down the road where the three of us had last spent time together. I let her talk and ask any question she wanted about her father's death and we both came to our conclusions which were similiar. It was one of the nicest days that we had spent since his death. I remined her that death doesn't pick a day, it can happen at any moment but it was his day to leave us but he had only left in body form and would always watch over her. What I am saying here is that children are never to be ignored or set aside because their grief is as deep as it gets. Its to be acknowlged. I won't write more but now every day we E-mail each other and I remind her how much she is loved and she has not been deserted and always has someone that will love her.
She has created a magic box that holds things of her father's that are special for her and I reminded her that all of his pictures and everything else I have will be hers so she has something to take into the future with her. When I came home that night, I put the flowers that we had gotten on his shrine and just now a week later are they falling apart but as I sat here looking at him, it was like him saying to me. "Thanks Mom" I will continue doing this as she continues to grow, not just her but also my grandson. I know I said I would go back into silence but this day I spent with a Lama and left there with a feeling of blessings. I sent her her daily E-mail asking if she would like to go see the Lama and if so I will take her and if she any more questions, they will be answered for her. She is not new to Buddhism as I have made sure of that since she was a baby and regardless what path she chooses, she will always remember her Buddhist grandmother. Who knows, maybe her path is the same as mine, that would be a nice legacy to leave behind.
I just wanted to remind each of you that grief is not just mothers and fathers but also for children and we must always remember that. I am not just talking about fathers but also about mothers.
Thank you for listening and perhaps someday you can help out another child.


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