I’m not a big cemetery person. I’ve never been to visit the graves of deceased relatives. I actually don’t like cemeteries at all... but as we found ourselves with the ashes of a 7lb baby boy, I began to understand the purpose and importance of cemeteries. I still haven’t quite figured out what my relationship with George Mason’s grave is going to look like - and since it is 3000 miles away from where we call home, I probably won’t have to make any decisions in the near future. Will I be the mama that visits the grave religiously on specific days or times? Will I visit alone? Or with Adam? Or out of guilt? I don’t know the answer to those questions. But this weekend, not one, but two of our family members, separate from one another, visited George Mason’s grave to place flowers.
It melts my heart to know that my son is remembered. Often the hardest part of this loss is he fear that this little boy who only lived for 16 hours will be forgotten, and I’ll (and Adam) be left with the burden of remembering him alone. Sharing his name only when it feels appropriate, not when it feels right. Wondering if by holding tight to his 16 hours, and recalling them with all the fondness and ugliness they encompassed, if I’m stalling my healing. How ridiculous. I’m certain that I won’t be the only person to remember him. I’m certain that it shouldn’t matter how often I say his name. How often I replay, retell, and relive those 16 hours. God gave us George Mason for 16 hours because the 9 months leading up to meeting him had me on my knees more times than I can count and because the last 10 months I have had to draw closer and dig deeper into the character of my Savior. George Mason had to work to do here on earth for his mighty God. That’s not something that anyone can or will forget. And the pictures of the flowers at the grave were such a wonderful reminder of that.
Today has been tearful. Not in a bad way, just in the way that life can tug at your heart strings. From the words of my mama’s favorite hymn to the pictures from George Mason’s grave, there are lots of bittersweet emotions running across my heart. I’m thankful for the people God has placed in my life that, whether knowingly or not, awaken those heart strings. I’m thankful for hearing George Mason’s name. I’m thankful for a God who loves me and listens when I cry out in sadness or in joy. I’m thankful for the complete strangers that have ministered to me brought their own journeys and experiences; and for those that have reminded me how awesome this Christmas season must be in Heaven, where my sweet little boy can be held by the very person who was born all those years ago.