About Me

My photo
Watkinsville, Georgia, United States
We lost my beautiful wife of 20 years on 9/12/07. Lisa was my world she was my everything and now she is gone. We are learning to live without Lisa now. I say we because I am not alone. My children are stuck in this mess with me. These are my notes, my vent, my way of letting you all know that we are doing well (some days). This is for myself, my friends and my family that want to know how we are doing and what we are up to. Along the way I hope this might also help someone else who has been dealt a similar hand.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Loose Ends

There is something that I have been struggling with the last few days. It’s just another one of those horribly difficult decisions that has to be made and its pretty much up to me and me alone to see that it gets taken care of. I did talk to Abby just a little about it. I just wanted to be sure that she knew I was trying to process it and figure it all out. I didn’t do a very good job and couldn’t even finish the conversation due to just falling apart midway through our talk. None the less, she was a trooper and just told me to do whatever I thought was best.

Here’s the thing… Both Lisa and I were always of the same school of thought on most everything. We agreed on most everything right up to and including what to do if anything ever happened to one of us. I knew her wish was to be cremated. She mentioned that on a number of occasions and we both wanted the same thing. However, the only problem is we just didn’t think it far enough out. We didn’t take it to the next level and we forgot that there is a beautiful little pile of ashes left over and you have to be prepared to do something with those ashes. We never thought it through to that point and as a result I have no idea what to do.

Now the wonderful folks at the funeral home will give you some options. Sure, they will offer to “take care” of the ashes for you. I have no idea what their idea of “take care” of them is and I don’t think I want to know. I just knew that was not an option for me at the time. Another option is, of course, to have the ashes put into some kind of container as temporary or even permanent storage.

When the decision had to be made I was still not even close to being in my right mind. So I did the only thing I could think of and told them to put the ashes into a nice wooden container for me. It’s a very simple wooden box that has a couple of butterflies carved onto the front along with her dates of birth and death. She just loved butterflies… The container is designed for easy access so that one can dispense the ashes when ready.

While I don’t think that I will ever actually be “ready” I do know that I need to figure something out. As much as I loved her, I just don’t think that I want to have that beautiful little wooden box sitting on my dresser for the rest of my life.

So, I suppose I will just have to continue to pray about this one until I can figure it out.  Maybe if I can work through this one, I can find the strength to work though a few other loose ends that I have been dreading.


  1. Chris, I am Becky Alhadeff. I taught Abby and taught at MBMS with Lisa. Twenty years ago when my father passed we had his remains cremated. Mother kept them in the original cardboard box and said that when she passed she wanted her ashes mixed with his. Two years ago, in the final stages of a terminal disease, she moved in with me and brought daddy's ashes. When she passed, two friends of mine purchased a special tree in her honor for my yard. They sent a landscaper named Angel over to plant the tree and to mix a portion of both ashes in the soil around the tree. He added a plague in honor of mother. The rest of the ashes he helped me combine in a beautiful vase which we then sealed. Later as I was cleaning out mother's things I found both of their wedding rings and tied them with a ribbon around the top of the vase. It sits in my living room and is the loveliest thing I own. They will be together forever. My mom died, to the day, eighteen years after my dad. What a love story. I know in my heart they are together again. Grief is weird and it sucks but it doesn't last forever. I miss Lisa also.

  2. Thanks Becky. That's a wonderful story and I thank you for sharing it with me. It's also giving me some much needed ideas.