In the United States, it’s Memorial Day weekend. People put flowers on graves, especially military graves, as a way to remember and recognize loved ones who have passed on through this life.
When I was a kid, my grandparents would get up early and cut iris and peonies from the yard. They would fill up water jugs and take glass jars as vases. It was a tradition and rain or sun, it happened.
We went to four different cemeteries and left flowers at a couple dozen graves. With each bouquet, there were stories about the people – nice, sometimes funny – sometimes sad stories. It was a brilliant way to teach me about my own history. It was also a great lesson in the continuance of life. These people still lived through us.
I still do this. I miss some years on the exact day, but I still make the effort and am always glad I did.
If it has been awhile for you – or if you have never decorated graves, I highly recommend it. Life is ever so short and it’s a great reminder of that – and of the people who have come before us.
Photo credit: Dyan Diamond
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