I was amazed at how many VNA employees there were and really surprised at the number of volunteers. They have volunteers who will make a bear out of clothing that belonged to your loved one. I knew right away that Christine has a sweater set that she wore all the time. Two days ago, I finally found it when I was going through some of her things. The grief counselor tells me that these bears are really nice. What a wonderful thing it is that these volunteers do.
Our church also had a Memorial Service a few days later. We walked into church with candles as they were reading off the names of anyone who requested that their loved one be included and had passed away during the past year. This also was a very nice service. It's a wonderful thing for the families to be acknowledged in this way, even though it was difficult.
By the way, I lost my rock only a few days later the Memorial Service. I can imagine what Christine would have said about that!! I put my car keys in my pocket where the rock was and it must have fallen out when I took my keys out. However, the next day I was going through some of Christine's things and quess what! I found some rocks! So I figure these are even more personal. When Christine was 18 months old, we moved from Anchorage to Oklahoma City. We flew to Seattle and picked up our vehicle and then drove to Oklahoma. That is a long drive especially for a child. Everytime we stopped Christine picked up rocks. We finally had to limit the number of rocks she could pick up at each stop because these weren't always tiny rocks. By the time we got to Oklahoma City the entire floor in the back seat was covered with rocks.
So Thanksgiving is just a few days away. I am thankful that we had 32 wonderful years with Christine and that she is no longer suffering. Christine hadn't been home for Thanksgiving since she moved to California. Nevertheless, it will be hard. One day at at time.