I’m no expert on grieving. I don’t know what the proper way to grieve is. I only know what feels right for me at a particular moment.
What I do know is for me to continue with the healing process I needed to spread my wife’s ashes.
I’ve spent a lot of time this year thinking about where to spread her ashes. Being a homebody, my wife didn’t have a special outdoor place she liked to spend time at. It took me a while to have an aha moment as to where I would scatter her remains.
After a failed attempt in Colorado early this Fall (the universe decided an alpine lake at about 11,000 feet in elevation was the wrong place), I decided to ponder this some more.
A couple of things became apparent to me during this process.
The first being in order to continue the healing process I needed to give my wife’s remains a final resting place. I’ve been carrying my wife’s remains with me for the past 3.5 years, keeping them in a urn under my bed while I’ve been on the road. It was time to give her remains a place outside.
The second was that the location(s) that I would chose to scatter her remains mattered only to me. Spreading ashes is an act for the living. The dead don’t care. For those left behind it’s something that brings a bit of comfort. Or so I imagine.
Last night at sunset I spread part of my wife’s ashes into the Gulf of Mexico along the Emerald Coast of Florida. The water was calm enough to allow me to see a sea turtle swimming along as I walked the beach looking for the right spot. Sea turtles were one of my wife’s favorite creatures.