This year on August 3rd marked 25 years since my Dad passed. We decided to make it special and visit his grave as a family. We used to visit every year growing up but it had been a long time since I had been back. Leading up to this special day, I enlisted family and friends to contribute thoughts and letters regarding his life and death with the perspective of 25 years having passed. I really had the BEST summer receiving these responses every few days or so. Being just 3 years old, there is so much I really don't know about my Dad and I actually learned a lot about him through these responses. Each letter was personal and heartfelt and often brought a tear to my eye. I think it gave me some closure that I didn't even realize I needed.
My Grandpa Mathison passed just 5 days after Ben was born in May and he was buried right next to him. Since I had just had Ben, I wasn't able to attend the funeral. I was happy we could visit him too while we were there. Such a beautiful grave side. I've always loved this big shade tree over their plots. I used to think people needed shade when they died because of this tree. Once when my fish died, I surrounded his little bowl with books so he'd have shade. Death through the eyes of a child is confusing. But it's amazing to look back and see how much we all have grown and changed (and multiplied!). I know my Dad is preparing a heavenly place for us to be reunited as a family and I look forward to that special day.