When my Mom and her Husband died within a few weeks of each other, we made sure they were buried next to each other at the cemetery his family requested. Knowing that we would probably never go visit the burial sites but that his family would, we trusted them to pick their perfect spot.
Turned out to be a really nice space as far as grave yards go. With a beautiful view and shade trees but all in all it was still a cemetery and I'm just not a cemetery visiting kind of person.
Well burying them together had its perks. Like a companion memorial marker. It would save us all money to get just one marker, and would signify their unwavering, unconditional and sometimes what seemed to be irrational love for each other. The two of them literally lived and died for each other and nothing else made more sense than having their names engraved in stone to put closure to their lives on this earth.
But suddenly I got a picture in my inbox from the husband's family. The picture was of his grave marker, with a vase and flowers. Next to the marker would be my Mom's grassy spot with nothing marking her existence . Hmmm OK change of plans.... His marker did not so much signify his life or death but made his family happy and so it shall be.
This meant it was time to get our Mom's marker ordered and I'll tell you what.... Her stone was going to be SPECIAL!!! Even if none of us get to see it, when other people pass by her spot, she will bring a smile to their faces just like she did ours. But by golly there was going to be a stone. I couldn't stomach the thought of hers always being empty with only GPS coordinates to mark her territory. And so we began the process of designing her spot.
First we knew that she didn't like people knowing how old she was, so we didn't put her birth date. She hated her full name, and so we used her nicknames. "Mom, Grandma and NeeNee" is listed on the top.
She also didn't die, if you remember from those posts, she simply went out to lunch. Yes, she asked before she stopped breathing if she could have a change of clothes to go out to lunch with her friends. We joked that she had been out to lunch since 1969 and she snarled at us. That is one fond memory from her hospital bed. So when she took her last breath, we told her she could go out to lunch whenever she wanted now.
And so her stone doesn't say "died", it says:
"Out to lunch since Jan. 30, 2014"
And the bottom has her favorite quote from her favorite shirt:
"I live in my own little world but that is OK, they like me here"
The granite is the same color as her kitchen tile from her favorite house and the other color matches her old furniture.
So in the end it is ALL HER.... And she would have a huge smile on her face right now. I'm even posting about it here as some sort of closure to the process just how she would have wanted to read it.
Who knew someone going out to lunch was such an ordeal....
I hope your lunch is tasty Mom... We love you to pieces!