Thursday, November 19, 2009

Mystery Flowers

Without getting into the details...this week may have been the hardest yet.  It wasn't like those first days of intense grief.  Even in those dark times, I could see light.  Even if it was just a glimmer, it was there.  This week has been more like the dreary fall days that are here.  When we can go days at a time without seeing the sun.  All that is there is the dull gray sky that can linger until we begin to forget what it was like in the darkness or in the light.  Cold.  Damp.  Ugly.  You know the kind of days I am talking about. 

Many new experiences came this week.  Some welcome, some not so welcome but came none the less.  When visiting the cememtary on Monday, we found Shyla's little grave had been covered with flowers.  And there, in the surprise silk garden was a little teddy bear with a note tucked underneath it.  The note read that the bear (and the flowers) were from children that attend school where I work.  One of the little girls lives next to the cemetary and must have seen me there sometime.  She is only in 4th grade and I am not sure how she knew about my loss or that Shyla was buried there.  The note also said that she and another 4th grade student visit my baby everyday and bring her a flower.  They also thought they would bring a little bear for my "terrible lost" (I just love how children spell).  The flowers the young girls have added are old, dirty, faded.  I pray they have blown off of other rocks and not been taken off on purpose.  There was even what looked like a large arrangement that had came off of another rock.

At first, I was touched by their thoughtfulness and sweetness.  But then, a new emotion krept in.  That was my daughter's place, it is my responsibility to decorate and care for it.  And admittingly snobbishly, I did not want old, used, hand-me-down, cast off florals to decorate the only physical place I can visit my child.  I had no idea what to do.  And why are eleven-year-olds allowed to play in a cemetary everyday, anyway, right?  I wrestled (and am still wrestling) over what to say and do.  I talked to the Elementary School Counselor (and close friend) and asked for her opionion.  She is going to speak to them from the angle that this is definatly weighing on their mind and they may need a different way to seek resolution.

I want these girls to know that they are thoughtful and sweet and do not want them to be offended if I removed some of the flowers.  But I also know that decorating is something I need to do.  Anyone have any suggestions?


Marie W said...

I understand and comment you talking to the school counselor. Maybe these students are not thinking about the fact that they are in a graveyard, but have seen you at Shyla's place and that is the only way they know how to help. The counselor speaking to them will be good, but it shows us that even the very children we work with are sensitive to our losses.

Mattie said...

The counselor talked to the young girls. She is so good with them. Everything is worked out. The girls know that I appreciate their expression of sympathy, but they also know that the flowers may be gone the next time they are there.

Anonymous said...

I had a smilar thing a couple of weeks ago on my son's grave. I felt touched and violated at the same time. Utter confusion whether to say "Thank you" or "How dare you"...

I have agreed with friends and family: bring what they want, as long as I can remove it easily. Taking care of our children's grave is something our mommy-duty tells us to. Because there's not much else we can do for them... That's our precious time being together.

Glad you got that solved with the girls... Sending a hug.