Day 285: My Souvenirs … From Funerals

Yesterday, the day I took this photo, marked the 10-year anniversary of my Grandpa Haffa’s funeral. It’s hard to believe I haven’t got to see him for 10 years. It was one of the hardest times of my life, but I really grew up that year. I learned that hugs from a stranger can be comforting, and that children can comfort their parents. I was only a junior in high school, but I also learned that I could stand in front of a whole crowd of people and shared my family’s memories. Two months later I stood up there again – for my Grandma. This tree was one of the plants given to our family at Grandpa’s funeral. My mom retired in May, so I inherited the tree a couple of weeks ago. The other two plants in my office are from my Aunt Jill’s funeral last year, and my other grandpa’s funeral in February. Is it weird that I seem to collect souvenirs from funerals? Maybe, but these daily reminders keep the memories alive.

A Norfolk Pine tree, given at my grandpa's funeral 10 years ago, now resides in my office, adorned with Halloween lights. I hope it lives 83 years just like he did.