Like every bereaved member I have suffered ups and downs following my wife’s sudden death six months ago. There were indications at the time of her death that she may have done something to harm herself, and four and half months passed before her death was recorded as “natural causes”. The coroner and the registrar then conspired between them to issue a certificate which showed the wrong cause of death, so I have had the struggle of getting them reluctantly to issue a corrected certificate. I have found that I tend to magnify the importance of setbacks like this, which can add to the feelings of sadness and loss. On the plus side, I have been doing some things which have helped me to cope and which I look forward to. We had quite a few trips and holidays planned and I have continued with all of these as well as planning some new ones. The memories of 28 years of trips together come flooding back and I recall the joy, the funny moments, and some of the challenges of our trips together. Overall I find that these trips help and they also remove the spectre of places becoming “no go” areas just because the last time that we were there was when we were together. When my wife’s brother died after a short illness 7 years ago, she had the idea of sprinkling some his ashes in places he had never been but had wanted to see. It really helped her cope with her youngest brother’s death. I have taken this on for her ashes too, so I am creating an “Ashes on Tour” log of the places with attractive views where I leave 80 grams of her ashes, being very careful to avoid private property, busy areas and consecrated ground. There is a photo and a brief commentary for each site, and this is shared with close family and friends. I am in no doubt that I am doing this for me. It really has helped in generating a positive reason to go somewhere, and reasons to go back and visit again. Although I joke about the “Great Escape” method of spreading the ashes, generally a small handful of ashes behind a rock, in a waterfall or round the roots of a tree is all it needs. And I have a few minutes of quiet and positive contemplation, and a new memory.
What a lovely way to remember your wife. I scattered my husband’s ashes in the sea at Looe our favourite holiday destination. He always wanted to move to Cornwall now he has his wish.
Happy travels I hope you make many new memories and have new adventures. X
We too are doing this with my daughter. As a family we sat down and shared memories of all the places we have been over the years and all the places we have spoken about going. We made a list and one by one we are going to take my daughter back/to our favourite destinations. The first one will be Tenerife in September. She also wants to go to Bora Bora but that is a trip for her and her siblings to share as that’s a flight that’s too long for me. I hope you find peace in taking your wife to your special places
I hope that the process will help you and the rest of your family. I certainly gain some comfort from it, and it has motivated me to get out and about rather than moping at home. Of course, it is not the whole answer, just one of the many strands we have to weave together to achieve a blend that honours the memories of our loved ones. It also recognises that we have the capacity to move forward, if not to move on. I am on the road but know that every bend and junction can have hidden traffic to disrupt the long journey before us. Safe travels.
I am planning to go to one of our favourite holiday destinations this year and we are going to leave some of his ashes in favourite spots.