Some time ago, there was a daytime talk show, I can’t remember which one, where the host had a guest on, who was paralyzed by her parents deaths.
As the primary caregiver, she had been responsible for their everyday care and function, as well as advocating for their healthcare.
And, upon the occasion of their passing, she found that she would go into a depression, every time there was a big holiday (Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving) at their birthdays… but especially on their Death Dates. Those were really hard to bear.
The advice from experts was to remember those who passed on their birthdays, try to build new and different traditions on special Holidays, and to try to block acknowledgement of the Death Dates, by staying busy, and planning activities that “take over” the Death Dates, and by trying to “take away their power”, by remembering the good times, and pushing the sad memories away.
I have, for the most part, been able to focus on the memories I have of them, from when they were alive, and the “treasures” I have, that (for me) helps to remind me of them, and keep their memory alive.
It struck me recently, that this year will be 20 years since my Mum passed, and shortly after, we started on the roller coaster that my Dad’s health journey would become, for his last few years.
In many ways, I think I was very fortunate to stumble upon that talk show, on that day. It certainly has helped me.
But, on this day, it suddenly, and without warning, shocked me that 20 years had passed. I guess that is the power of dates, over time.
And so, I shall raise my mug of tea, in toast… and go back to keeping busy.