Joyanna Adams

Nobody's Opinion

Nobody Remembers the Gravestones of Lovers Never Made

Nobody Remembers

My parents, young and in love.

I had a ‘creative’ dream last night. In my dream, I created this beautiful engraved headstone for my parents, both of whom passed away many years ago: It was just ONE gravestone, but it was big enough to cover two graves. On the side, was a stone engravement of my father’s profile. And he was holding in his arms, his wife, my mother. And she was happy, and in love, and young, and cuddled softly in his arms. She was wearing her favorite checkered dress, and her high school saddle shoes. It was them, at the beginning of their love, when their love was fresh and new. Their names were engraved on the right of the stone: the stone replicas of them both…engraved on the left.

This huge headstone was so beautiful in my dream, I woke up and wondered why MORE gravestones of married couples aren’t seen in graveyards. All the graves are separate. Why not make just one gravestone for the couples who mate for life, to be remembered as mates for all eternity? I bet there are many couples that would love that.

I’m sure I had this dream because neither one of my parents got a traditional funeral. My father died first, and my mother donated his body to science. He died of a humongous brain tumor…we thought, naively at the time, that he would go to Washington University and would help the students study brain tumors.

After he died, I put together this big shelving, meant to hold various things…but it was, to me, his headstone. It’s in the kitchen now, holding up bowls and a popcorn machine, and NOW on the very spot where he died, there a statue of King Tut.

That’s my dad’s gravestone. King Tut. I think he would find that amusing.

My mom, also died in our house. She made me promise every day that I would NOT put her name in the papers, nor tell anyone about her death. She too, gave her body to science, hoping it would help someone. Like my father, she too suffered horribly in the last years of her life, paralyzed on one side as was my father. Both with massive damage from hemorrhagic strokes.

The day she died, I was sleeping next to her bed, passed out on the floor, exhausted from the night before. I had been up for over 40 hours trying to suction mucus out of her throat because she had pneumonia.

The nurses would not come.

I remember thinking when they came to take her body away, that there would be no place for me to mourn, and no one to remember her to me. No one knew she died. No one was there to console me, tell me stories about her that only they knew. My husband did the best he could, but now I know that funerals really are a special necessary. To help the people who love them bear the sorrow.

Nevertheless, funerals are too expensive for many now, and I have to wonder…are people cremating and donating because they can’t afford a funeral?

Right above the bed, where my mother died, I put a giant poster of the Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. Whenever I asked her if there was one place she would want to go, she said it would be to Germany to see that Castle. So, I got a big beautiful gold frame, and engraved what I thought would go on her grave, and hung it right above the place that she died, in her King side bed which seemed to engulf her tiny body.

She never had the money to go to Germany, and I didn’t have the money to send her.

Eight months after my mother died, I had a dream, that her body was going into a cremation oven. It was on New Year Eve, 2002, that I had that dream. Her spirit hugged me before she went into that fire, and the love that I felt from her in that dream was bigger than ANY love I’ve ever felt on this earth. It was surreal. I often wonder if my mother’s body had been cremated that night for real, and why emotions in dreams can be so much stronger than in real life.

It was much later that I found out that bodies donated to science can go ANYWHERE. To dental students, to just about anywhere. The thought of my dad getting his teeth pulled out by a bunch of college students, when the real thing they should have been studying was his brain, left me horrified.

And by the way, in case you think that my parents were not religious, nothing could be farther from the truth. God, in our family, was in your heart, and in the sky, and a mystery to all mankind.

Which is why, the day after the dream, my husband and I both bought a Mega Million ticket, in which, we BOTH had the final number as 7, I  took it as a sign from my parents who were thanking me for their lovely headstone that I designed in my head. Saying “See…you’re mates too!”

My mother’s King size bed was donated to the Veterans and in its place is my drum set, sitting under her ‘gravestone’ Castle in the sky.  I play Gene Kruppa once in a while, because she always said when I played Gene Krupa’s “Sing, Sing, Sing” it put her to sleep.

You can’t do that in a graveyard. Just putting up the drum set alone would take a good 40 minutes.

So, don’t ask me why I’m telling you all this. It’s just that sometimes, when you have a creative dream…but wait! I just googled ‘coupled gravestones.”

I’m not the only one who had this dream…..darn. I was all ready to go be a stonemason.

You learn something new, every day….I better start saving up now….

Okay, bring the whole bed!

Makes you wonder who posed for this….

MY personal favorite and the one I would pick.

 

 

 

 

 

March 25, 2017 - Posted by | Just life, Uncategorized | ,

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