I love cemeteries. Truly. If I had a day of beautiful weather that I could entirely call my own, I would love to spend a good chunk of it exploring a cemetery. People react to this love of mine with indifference, amusement, whole-hearted agreement, or they're morbidly creeped out. But it can't be helped; I just love cemeteries.
I love the quiet in cemeteries. I love reading names and imagining the life that person had. I love imagining who has visited the same spot I'm standing on over the years. I get teary over people I've never known or heard of. Cemeteries are chock full of history. I love the spirit of reverence in cemeteries.
Lucky for me, I discovered today that I live very close to a fantastic, large, old, beautiful cemetery. Since my husband is out of town with two of our three children, I felt like I could handle taking just one and spending some time in the cemetery this morning. Being Memorial Day added an extra reason to go even though A has been screaming his head off 80% of the weekend. We didn't stay long, A wouldn't have it. But it was still a special experience.
As I drove around trying to find an exit, I put the windows down to let in the beautiful weather and the special cemetery feel. I drove past a family made up of a little girl, a mom, and a dad who was pushing a stroller. As I drove by I heard the dad say to the little girl, "And do you know where heaven is?" Immediately my throat constricted painfully and my eyes burned. I'm not sure why that one little question got to me so much, but it made me think of so many things I am grateful for. I'm grateful that the death of loved ones has not been prevalent in my life (*knock on wood*). I'm grateful to have my family. I'm grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ that has brought me a knowledge of Heavenly Father's plan. I'm grateful for temples that bring all our families together forever. I'm grateful that my parents, husband, and family have talked about loved ones who have passed away allowing me to feel a love for people I never met or didn't know well enough. I'm grateful for my Heavenly Father and His Son and the love they have for me and show me. It's been a hard day, dealing with far too much shrieking from A and missing the rest of my family. And yet it's been a beautiful day of sunshine and peace, too.
Happy Memorial Day everyone!