Your Memory Tree
by Louise Lagerman

"I was in the garden yesterday planting flowers around your tree like I do every year. I always plant marigolds, your father's favorite flower. He loves the strong yellow color and how they feel light and bright like you. When he planted the tree four years ago, it was so tiny - not much more than a twig. As I gaze upon your tree today I see a strong, tall, beautiful tree, firmly planted in the ground and reaching for the sky. A beautiful cypress tree: that is what we wanted for you when your father planted your tree over four years ago on that sunny but sad Easter morning. When we planted your tree, our hearts were heavy with missing you. We wanted to do something tangible in your memory. We picked the beautiful water cypress, a tree you always loved. At the time we did not know the meaning of the cypress but have come to find the tree's meaning."

The cypress tree has often symbolized the universe, due to its roots being underground, its trunk above ground, and its leaves reaching for the sky. This represents three distinct levels of life - birth, middle life, and heaven - with the fact that the tree is evergreen, symbolizing immortality. The cypress tree is known as "the tree of life."

How fitting that the tree we planted for you is known as the tree of life. For you were always so full of life from the tomboy little girl who could outrun most boys to the strong beautiful young woman you became.

The tree has become a shrine to you and your life; so as I plant the sunny yellow marigolds and place your angel statues around the base of your tree, I feel you, I feel your strength and your love and I know you live on, just as your tree does and will continue to do. I also know we will see you again in another time, another place, another dimension, for love lives on, love never dies; it is too strong and solid, just like your tree.

So for now I will try to be strong for you. I will go on to love others still on this earth. I do this for you, and for your love and strength, and when we meet again one magnificent day I can hear you saying, "Good job mom, for your love survived. It survived time and space."

For just like your tree growing more strong, beautiful, and solid with each passing day, so will my love grow for you, and for my loved ones still on this earth with me. Because really, in the end, it is only love that matters. I love you my daughter and I always will.


About the Author

Louise is a mother to three: Two sons, Eric and James, and her daughter Keren who died in 2006 at the age of 23. Louise has worked in health care for many years in the geriatric field. She lives with her husband Steven right outside of Houston Texas. Along with friend and fellow bereaved mother Gladis Alcorta she created the Grief Support website and message board. Grief Support now has over 500 members who share and depend on each other for support. Louise also has begun writing articles and poems on child-loss and grief. She has a following of grieving parents on Facebook - over 800 who find comfort in her writings and look for them every day. Louise’s passion in life now is to support grieving parents and grandparents to find some hope and light back in their lives. Louise can be reached through her website for speaking engagements or writings and of course support on her Grief support site, http://griefsupport.proboards.com/, or her personal email txlouise@aol.com. Her favorite quote is by Jason Reeves: "In my own way I take you everywhere I go and it feels like Home."