Today is the 15th. That means that Jaime died one month ago today. That’s one entire month without my sister-in-law in my life. and one entire month that I cannot believe has passed already. I don’t know if I’m in the denial stage of grief or what, but it honestly does not feel real that Jaime won’t walk through my front door today to apologize for being a flake and not seeing the kids in forever.
When we picked Thursday, March 20th to be the day of Jaime’s Memorial instead of waiting until the weekend, it was chosen for the simple fact that we simply didn’t think we could handle two additional days of intense grieving, plus it was going to be an outdoor service in the mountains in March so we needed the best weather possible. The Pastor we wanted to lead the service could come on Thursday, so Thursday it was.
After the day was set, we realized that the 20th was also the 1st day of Spring (the Vernal Equinox) and the United Nation’s International Day of Happiness. I like that. Jaime was an incredibly happy person – it made sense to celebrate her life on that day.
We had three area photographers offer to capture the day on film for us, and it’s been pretty darn cool to look through the 100s of pictures they sent us and see who all was there. Around 500 people came to support us that day and celebrate Jaime’s life, so it was impossible for us to talk to everyone that day. It has made our hearts swell with gratitude though to be able to take time to look through the pictures and remark in awe, “Oh! So-and-so was there too!”
Case in point: We have a good friend whose father died in a plane crash when our friend was maybe 20 years old. Jeff told Charlie one day long ago how much it meant to him to see everyone who showed up for his father’s funeral that day, and he told him that ever since then he has made every effort possible to go to funeral services himself. It’s often easier to NOT go, but he knows first hand that it meant the world to his grieving family, so he does it. For Jaime’s funeral, he and his wife and kids were actually on vacation in Peru about to hike Machu Piccu — and they came back to Colorado instead to be with us and to grieve with us. No way in hell did we expect them to cut their vacation short, change their international plane tickets, and come back for just that one day… but you know what? It was an important day, and I am so thankful they were there. I’m so thankful that everyone was there.
I know that most of you who read this blog don’t live anywhere near me, but I honestly know that SO MANY of you were thinking of and praying for me and my family that day, so thank you. Thank you for being there with us that day. Thank you for supporting us however you could. Thank you for all of the cards and letters and messages you sent us. I truly cannot thank you enough for being there for me on that one hard day and on all the days to come.
I love you guys.