March 12, 2018
After two weeks of barely keeping my head afloat, I made it! My last post, Forecast for Rain talked about two occurrences that happened a day apart; getting in Chase’s car for the first time and his autopsy report results. Later that same week was my son’s birthday. A tough week for sure! The hardest ever so far. I shed many tears for many days. They say grief gets harder day to day, yes it does!
My emotions were still raw and overly sensitive. The “what if’s” and “why’s” haunted me with more intensity. Guilt knocked louder at my door asking why I didn’t drive to Spring to check on Chase when he was sick from the flu shot. And fear of how I would make it through his birthday was sweeping in like a tornado.
Grief is very scary at times. We never know day to day how we will feel, who we may see, what comment someone may make. It’s like walking across a thin layer of ice cascading across a lake. We try not to fall in so we must walk across the path very gently.
For Chase’s birthday I made plans to visit Fredericksburg where we spent his 21st celebration last year with his girlfriend. We had such a lovely time. Great memories. The historical small town will always remind me of Chase’s last birthday. I wanted to go again but the closer it got to his birthday the more I wanted to be closer to home and Chase. I ended up canceling the trip.
The day before his birthday several family members and friends sent me messages telling me they were thinking of me and that tomorrow will be a tough day. I thank each one of them for sharing their thoughts with me. It’s comforting to know Chase and I were on their mind.
I brainstormed what I wanted to do for his special day: bring balloons and flowers to his site, make his special Oreo Cookie Cheesecake, eat his favorite food, and sing Happy Birthday to him, alone of course. 🙂
Later in the day I came up with what I thought was a neat idea. Bring lots of white balloons to his site along with markers for visitors to write a personal message on the balloon and than release it to him. This idea made me feel good for the first time that week. Chase would really enjoy reading the messages and he would think it was really cool! I still try to impress him! 🙂
That evening, I was trying to do something to lift my spirits so I hung some art work and pictures in our guest room, which is Chase’s old room, and my new room now. Since Chase’s passing I yearn for anything to be closer to him. His presence is in his old bedroom so I will be there a while.
The room is decorated in all of Chase’s decor from his apartment. He picked every painting/print himself! A black and white New York skyline print, a classic Star Wars print, a mini black, grey and white Darth Vader painting, a colorful dashboard of an old steering wheel, and a couple Astros pictures of their finest players. Put them all together and you have Chase!
I turned on Chase’s blue aromatic light and put a fresh scented candle in it to melt. Chase kept this on in his apartment continuously and added fresh candles when needed. It always smelled so good.
I finally climbed into bed and surprisingly had a soothing comfortable feeling. I told myself I could not wake up feeling down in the morning and it was going to be a special day. I prayed for peace and strength.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHASE! As soon as I woke up I knew the day was bright and love was in my heart. My daily morning routine is saying “good morning Chase” as I touch his hair on his picture that sits on the dresser. Today I said, “Happy Birthday Chase.”
It was time to get moving, I had lots to do on this special day.
Twenty-two years ago I was blessed with this lovely child. He was the apple of my eye, the tender unconditional love I had never felt before, the true meaning of life! This day and every birthday moving forward, is a day of great celebration. Chase’s physical self is not here but his spirit lives on and he is more alive than ever!
My first stop was to pick up two dozen white balloons. As I put the giant trash bags filled with balloons in my car I was thinking, how am I going to do this by myself? There were plenty of friends and family that would have been very happy to help but I wanted to do this alone. At every one of Chase’s past twenty-one birthdays, I ran around frantically getting things ready for his birthday so this day would be the same.
It was a partly cloudy day with periodic hello’s from the sun! Cool and crisp with a STRONG gusty breeze. A perfect scene for setting up twenty-four balloons with no help! 🙂 It was comical to say the least. I proceeded to launch two balloons unexpectedly into the sky and two others popped so I was down to twenty. I almost decided I shouldn’t release my own balloon because I had wasted four already but there was no way I wasn’t going to send Chase a message.
I wrote my personal message to Chase trying not to pop the balloon with the marker. I held the ballon up high and let go. It traveled quickly north and I watched it dance with the clouds high into the sky until the tiny white dot was no longer visible. It was so therapeutic, a beautiful moment. I had an overwhelming sense of peace in my heart. I know Chase was with me.
His site looked beautiful. I knew Chase was very happy with the bright colors I chose. I love making him smile. He is color blind so I try to use colors I know he can see, which is mostly blue.
It was getting close to lunchtime and I knew he was going to have visitors all day and a BBQ later at his site from his friends. I declined to attend the BBQ because of the week I was having and the unstable waves of emotions. Chase wouldn’t want a party pooper at his party! Especially his Mom! 🙂
It was so hard to leave his site. It was so beautiful. I couldn’t stop staring at it. Maybe Chase was there and I was drawn to him. He will definitely be attending his party and visiting with family and friends all day.
As I drove away, the sun started to peep out and I felt gratitude, tranquility, and calmness. I was eagerly headed home to make Chase’s favorite Oreo Cookie Cheesecake. The rest of the afternoon I planned on reminiscing and looking at happy, goofy, fun pictures and videos of Chase. Chase was always full of life, love and laughter and he shared it with any lucky person who crossed his path. He never met a stranger!
That evening I enjoyed a slice of Chase’s Cheesecake and sang Happy Birthday to him. Boy was it delicious! I have to admit, and yes I am biased, it was the best cheesecake I ever had! I decided it was time to write in his birthday card. I was waiting for that special moment. I will continue to do this every year and will take these cards with me when I travel to heaven to hand deliver to him. That day will be a celebration! I can’t wait!!
I read that grieving parents have a tough time with holidays, birthdays, graduations, etc. From my experience, it is fear and anxiety of facing it. Like I mentioned, it was the worst two weeks leading up to his birthday. But with the power of my spirit guides (who I believe we all have), the great man above, and my new precious angel Chase, I was able to keep my head way above water and gratefully enjoy his special day.
Until we chat again, Dance With the Clouds!
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