Memorial Tree Planting Advice Needed

msmacgyverFebruary 20, 2008

My mother passed away in Dec. To tell the truth I think I did all my grieving during her illness as her passing has been a relief. It is comforting to know she is no longer ill, that she is in heaven, that she is with Dad and other loved ones. I miss her dearly and almost daily think of some reason to call her as I did when she was well enough to speak on the phone. I do talk to her as IÂve talked to Dad for many years. Although I was able to go home for her funeral, my sister could not. I feel that Mom is with me but sadly my sister needs somewhere to Âgo to be with and to remember Mom. Even though we live quite far apart I am planning a tree planting in MomÂs memory in my sister's beautiful large yard. I had a tree planting when my 20 yr. old granddaughter passed away a few years ago. It was a big affair with many people in attendance. There was a memorial mass, eulogy at the tree side and prayers said by the priest. MomÂs tree planting will be a small affair just a few family members. I would like for it to be meaningful and memorable but have no idea what we should do beside plant the tree. There wonÂt be a priest or reverend there.

Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


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After weeks of trying to arrange for vactions and air fare so everyone can be together for a tree planting my sister has informed us she doesn't want to do it. She can't deal with it. I guess everyone deals with grief in their own way. So thanks for reading but unless you feel someone else may benefit from an answer I guess I don't need the advice anymore. Sorry

    Bookmark   February 21, 2008 at 4:47AM
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Hang on a minute!!! I wouldn't cancel the whole idea. Let us know more about your situation. And first of all, my sincere condolences on the loss of your dear mother. I lost my own mother in 1999, my only child in 2005 and my dad in 2007. So, I know some of what you're feeling. Now you have to deal with this. Is there a favorite place either near you or near your sister that your mother used to like visiting? Even if there isn't, are you able to plant a tree near your place or in a public area like a park or something? I think the idea of anyone wanting to go through a memorial ceremony (no matter how big or small, it's from the heart)is such a touching idea, regardless even if it's only yourself. And there is no timeline in which it has to be done, as you'll never forget your mother. Let your sister grieve in her own way, as everyone does it differently. I hope you'll go through with it, as it is a "gift" to your mother, celebrating her life. Please keep us posted on what you decide to do. We care.

Emma in SC

    Bookmark   February 21, 2008 at 8:42AM
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Dora Vann Snider

When our great-grandson died, our granddaughter asked permission to plant a tree near his grave site. They planted a Bradford Pear. It is very close to his grave. She bought the tree and the cemetery caretakers planted it. It will be taken care of by the caretakers.

It is a beautiful tribute to the most painful time of our lives.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2008 at 9:49PM
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Thanks for your concern but I am doing fine. Maybe some would think me cold hearted but I refuse to grieve. IÂm done crying. I havenÂt shed a tear for Mom because she is much better off than she was here. The tears IÂve shed were for myself, for my brother and my two sisters. I am glad Mom is finally at rest. Yes I do miss her dearly but I chose to celebrate having had her for my mother for sixty years. I chose to remember her healthy and happy. I chose to remember her quick and amazing humor and how she loved to laugh. I chose to remember how many times I went home from her house with my tummy full of her wonderful cooking and my face and sides actually aching from laughing and smiling at her jokes and wisecracks. I have 59 years of happy memories to draw on so I refuse to think of how things were towards the end of her life. I cried for her only while she was sufferning so. I had to work on it but I can no longer see my father suffering from cancer in his hospital bed. I will work on it and erase the picture of Mom in her hospital bed as well. Every time that picture comes to mind I quickly replace it with one of millions of happy memories.

I have a lovely little memorial garden in my yard. There is a comfy chair surrounded by plants in memory of people I've loved and lost. I plan to add something in my mother's memory as the weather permits. Maybe IÂll get an angel instead of a plant.
I had wanted to gather some family and have a ceremony to help my sister deal with her grief and the fact that she canÂt visit MomÂs grave. She seemed agreeable up until yesterday when she finally broke down and told me she couldn't bare it, she is overwhelmed by the whole idea and she is terrified if we do it the tree will die in her care. I suggested we could do it in a local park or church grounds but she is adamant. She doesn't want anything to do with it. She wonÂt even think about coming here to do it. Maybe itÂs all too fresh for her. Maybe she will change her mind in time. She is an emotionally sensitive person so we wont force anything on her. For now, since some have already paid for their tickets we have all agreed to just have a little reunion and enjoy one anotherÂs company.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2008 at 7:07PM
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That's too bad, Bernie. You can do something personal in your own garden.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2008 at 10:47PM
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I'm so sorry that after all your planning, your sister has broken down in this manner, but you have to respect her grief. I do understand that you have already done most of your grieving. That was true for me when my father died. He had been ill and hating life for the last two years before his death. I grieved those years, helping as much as I could, but when he was gone, I knew he wasn't suffering any more, and was free. It sounds like you were able to be with your mother, and your sister wasn't. She has a whole different set of feelings to work through. I was with my father; my sister was not, and she is still angry about his death and their unresolved conflicts.

If you want to plant a tree, do it. Where ever it seems appropriate to you. Or just a very special plant in your garden. I'm sure there are others who will join you in this celebration. Go ahead. Let your sister know when it's going to happen, and if she chooses to come, fine.

I'm sorry you lost your mother. You must feel very alone, but remember, we're here.

If not - fine too.


    Bookmark   February 23, 2008 at 2:30PM
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