I got this a few years back for her. My dad has the same one on his forearm without the flowers.
Have you ever noticed that after someone has passed that person is put up on a pedestal, and 100's of stories are told about that person for several days or months later. Some probably true, but a lot are untrue or at least exaggerated. I think as humans as a way to grieve is to begin generalizing that person. We say things like, "they always did this...or always did that" but in fact they didn't. For instance, if I were to pass away today a lot of you might say, "John always played his guitar or was always into music" but in truth I have only played music for 11 yrs. Most of my life was spent on a basketball court. I think we do this to try and hold on to those memories of that person, so we connect them to some story or some activity.
I don't think that is a bad thing at all, but for me when I lose someone in my life I try and remember how they laugh or how they smiled. I try and remember certain nuances that may have continually did. Even how they talked. For me this helps remember them more. I try and hold on to those for as long as I can.
Unfortunately with my sister Angel, I can not remember any of those things. I can't remember her laugh, smile or the way she talked. She was killed in a car accident in 1989, and since then I can only remember the stories others tell about her. I only have a few memories I can actually see in my minds eye. (great dc talk song btw)
That thought saddens me and maybe that's why I don't talk of her much, because there is not a lot to say. I have talked with Sherra a few times about this. About how I can't recall those memories. I wish there was a pill we could take to bring those memories back up. Some of my friends may read this and say, "John it's called LSD" but for real I wish I had those memories back!!
The stories that people tell of Angel make her out to be just that an angel. Stories like how funny she was. How when she walked in the room no one else mattered. How she had this grace about her that you couldn't explain. How strong of a christian she was. How Angel never and I mean never met a stranger.
You see I don't have those stories, but I do have these. She was an amazing sister. She loved me so much. She use to write me letters (snail mail) from college. She loved her family. I know she was a gifted basketball player, because she received a full scholarship to Baylor University. Not everyone can do that. I know she was beautiful. I know she had great style. She had great taste in cars. She drove a cherry red 1956 Chevrolet truck with a rattle snake head on the gear shift. How boss is that? She had great taste in music. (Van Halen was her favorite band.) She was tall. She was 6'3" with dark skin, dark hair, and green eyes. I know she loved the arts, because she painted and wrote poetry a lot. Angel was my kinda girl, and I would love to just chill with her and shoot the preverbal breeze with her.
Sometimes I wonder how my life would have been impacted by her life if she were still alive today. Would she married? Would she have kids? How would she have handled Baylor winning the women's NCAA championship in 2004? Would she like the music I write or would she say it needs to sound more like David Lee Roth? What would my son think of her? I know she has impacted my life so much through her death, but I will ask God when I stand before Him...WHY?
My advice today...love, hold, touch, laugh, cry, smile, kiss, and listen those you love so much that you never forget the little things.