On January 2/2012 my 22 year old son Richard died of testicular cancer 5 days after diagnosis. For the rest of that winter I wanted to die too. It was only when Spring arrived and the ground began to emerge with new life that I found a way to channel my deep grief into something that not only kept my hands busy, but also fed my soul. I started with creating a small garden for Richard and used his bowling ball as the focal point. I continue to add to his garden each year. It has roses, lilies, angels, dragonflies, and books. I had a custom made sign made for my yard that says “If I had a flower for every time I think of you, I would walk forever in my garden”. Because January 2 is the anniversary of the worst day of my life, I have started a tradition to plant a tree every July 2 in Richard’s honor. July represents warmth and light, and is the opposite of the bleak day of winter when we lost him. It is one of the ways I carry him forward with me, and every Spring when I watch the leaves burst forth with life on one of his trees I am reminded of my son, and though his life here was short, he lives on in so many ways.
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