Monday, October 3, 2011

First Visit by Myself

I cannot recall the exact number of times we have visited Marcus' graveside.  The number isn't very high.  Perhaps more than ten, but definitely less than 20.  When we do visit it is usually with Marcus' friends from out of town or when it marks an occasion or another anniversary of the accident.

One thing I am certain is that I have never visited by myself.  Until this day. 

I had to miss work this day because my scooter had a mechanical problem.  What I thought was going to be major dollar wise turned out to be a minor thing.  A loose oil filter and then a loose gasket. 

The scooter shop is on Greenville Avenue, the same street the cemetery is located.  I had only passed the cemetery twice that I had not stopped and visited his grave.  One of those times was not planned, we just ended coming up Greenville for no reason.  It was late almost midnight and we couldn't have gotten in the cemetery, so we decided to just drive-on.  

The second time, I was also coming from Vespa Dallas.  I was avoiding riding on the freeway and I unconsciously rode up Greenville.  I was almost at a panic when I got to the intersection of I-635 and Greenville.  I knew I was not skilled enough to ride on the freeways, so I kept on up Greenville. 

By the time I can see the cemetery my emotions had gotten the best of me.  I was in tears and I was talking aloud apologizing to Marcus that I cannot stop by because I do not think I can do it without his Mom or Alex.  Which is odd because I always contend that I do not FEEL he is at his grave.  I feel his presence the most at home or in his room at his Mydia's house.  But still the overwhelming guilt of not stopping, got the best of me.

This day I was prepared to go up Greenville.  As I left the shop, I was not sure if I was going to stop or not.  I figured I will know by the time I get there.  But as soon as I got lost in the din of road noise and the whine of the scooter in my helmet, I can almost here Marcus taunting me.  It was just like when I am afraid to look down from a tall building or when he found out I will never try bungee jumping.  The teasing is in incessant at these times.  But at that moment I can hear him saying, "You'll be fine.  C'mon I will do it with you!"  After that I knew I was going to stop by.

It was one of the most unusual hours I have ever felt in my life.  Once there, I did what always do at first.  I inspected the immediate area around his marker.  Due to the drought, there was very little green grass left.  I had a quick fright because I could not locate the marker at first glance.  Marcus' marker is almost the same color as the grass.  Plus there was a mound of dug up dirt where I originally thought his marker was.  I thought somehow his marker was damaged and the maintenance crew has taken it in for repair.  As soon as I located his grave (still not used to admitting that my son has a fucking grave!), a certain peace came over me.  And I literally felt Marcus with me!  Not the physical Marcus in the grave, but him. 

I spoke out loud talking to him.  No, he did not answer of course.  But it felt comfortable. 

I looked around and I saw a woman eating a plate of food at a nearby grave.  She seemed to have been talking out loud herself.  She, like me, was sitting on the ground and visiting someone she obviously cared about.  Afterwards she chalked the grave marker on what seems like butcher paper. 

I looked across the other side and I saw a mid-aged woman stepping out of a late 80's or early 90's White Firebird.  She too had some sort of "goodie bag" with her. 

Seeing these two women put me more at ease.  Seeing them also saddened me more.  They seem to be old pros at this visiting someone at the cemetery.  Just another reminder of how forever the loss of our son is. 

While there I trade to pray the rosary, but I could not remember how to properly do so.  So I tried to read out my Novena book and I cannot find an appropriate Novena prayer.  Again at this point I imagined Marcus giving me crap about the two failures. 

So I just laid on the ground next to the marker and prayed.  I prayed what was in my heart.  I spoke to my son and as if we both just laid there.  The picture on the top of this entry is what is directly above the grave.  I can almost hear him say, "Didn't Mom say we were suppose to get chimes for this tree?  Not for me of course, but for the other visitors that come see my grave?"  

This may seem insane to any reader.  And it is true I may be insane.

But I know on one of the next visits I will have a ladder, a long stick with a hook on the tip and some sort of chime.  So when you visit his grave you will hear more than just road noise. 

If you do visit, please let us know.