After our traditional Black Friday shopping, we hit the road later on Friday morning and headed up to DePere (Green Bay area) to visit Doug’s family. I am really lucky that I really love my in-laws and Doug’s extended family.
On Saturday we headed up to Doug’s grandma’s house to make holiday candy and cookies with all of his aunts. The tradition wouldn’t have been complete without stopping for cup of coffee first. The drive-thru line was long so I decided to run in quick. Everything has a reason. I had the blessing of meeting a blog reader (Hi Katee!) When a blog reader introduces themselves, it’s like a little hug from God. A nod from the big guy that I’m on the right path and I’m following his word. These encounters usually happen on the hardest of days or the days that I could use help to smile. I am always humbled by the words and kindness I receive from these meetings.
Saturday could have been a really hard Owen day … I was all worked up. It was the 6 month “anniversary.” The term anniversary is almost sickening … it’s not something to celebrate. I often thought about what that day was going to be like. 6 months later, gone almost as long as he was alive. How was I going to feel? I was on egg shells, just waiting for grief to knock me over the head and take over the day.
A piece of “advice” we talked about in my grief support group was to let your wishes be known. Let your family know when you want to do something in memory of your loved one. So I did … I brought an orange candle and asked that we light it. I spoke his name when I was thinking about him. It helped. The aunts chimed in. We cried, we laughed. We remembered what it was like to be in the hospital. Grief was still visiting … still pulling at my heart-strings, but family came together and didn’t let it steal the day.
We created memories. True, Owen should have been there to complete it, but he wasn’t. It’s the just facts. He wasn’t there but we were.
Here are a few pictures from the day:
Al the ladies sitting around the table (taking a small break from all our cooking)
Abby & Nya were loving the babies! Here is Abby having her turn at feeding Weston.
Doug’s cousin Kayla feeding Logan
All I had to do was say “squeeze in for a picture” and this is what I got! Such good picture-taking kids we have in our family!
The kid’s table at Great-Grandmas. Doug eat many meals at this same table. In fact, he wrote his name in a Sharpie on the chair Logan is sitting at. The first time Jaden was over, he had to write his name on the other “just like daddy.” His name is on Weston’s chair.
That face that Weston makes gets me every time …
Nya was super excited to help with Weston’s bath. Weston wasn’t digging the bath that night though …
Here is all of our hard work!
At the end of the night, Logan – so fresh and so clean after his bath – sat belly up to the table and helped himself to hand full after hand full of popcorn puffs.
It was a really nice visit in Green Bay. I only wish we could visit more often. It’s hard since my side of the family doesn’t see each other any more. They are the only extended family I have. So … they kind of are stuck with me 🙂