There is something artificial about setting aside one particular day to remember.
Artificial, yes. But also merciful.
Anyone who’s ever ached knows that you remember every single day. You grieve every single day. The ache may change and the scar may harden into proud flesh, but you’re never exactly the same where you were broken by loss.
In the beginning, you can’t escape the constant grief even if you board a ship to Neptune. There’s no need to remind yourself to remember, when your loss is all you can’t forget.
A strange mercy happens, though, and at some point you realize you’re not crying. You can walk without the wobble of the half-alive.
And then you feel guilty.
If you’re not in constant agony, does that mean you didn’t love enough?
If you’ve stopped weeping like an open wound, does that mean you’ve forgotten?
By no means.
Would he want you doubled over in agony of the soul 22 hours a day?
Would she want you paralyzed with grief?
Or are they more interested in our healing than anyone but God Himself?
Even healing hearts can hurt, and so we have those anniversaries and “artificial” days. By the time they come around, we’ve welled up enough tears to drench the Memorial Garden. We pour them out over legions of flowers and remember in a focused way, feeling the ache on a level that “everyday” can’t contain.
Truly, every day is a memorial day once someone you’ve loved has gone behind the veil. Every day, that is, until faith becomes sight and memory is lost in the blazing “today” of everlasting life.
We do not grieve as those who have no hope. Feel the warmth of the blaze even as you remember.