Friday, May 25, 2012

Dilemma - I'd like advice

OK, so I have this dilemma...

For whatever reason, I have been thinking a LOT about how I want to recognize the one-year anniversary of Aimee's death, even though it's still almost seven months away. I don't know why I have this preoccupation, but it's been going on for 5-6 weeks now. And I think I've settled on what I want to do, but I'm still having some doubts.

I think I want to go back to Florida, charter a boat to take me out to where Aimee died, and scatter some flowers out onto the water.

Now, the mere thought of setting foot in Florida makes me uncomfortable. Thinking of going back to The Keys makes me sick and nauseous beyond belief. And the idea of sitting in a boat in the water right where Aimee lost her life gives me a primal fear I can't even describe. And yet, this seems to be where my gut is leading me to go.

Initially I thought that if I took such a trip, I'd want to do it alone. But after thinking about it I realized that having family along (Aimee's and mine) wouldn't be a bad thing at all (if they wanted to be there). I sent everyone in the family an email a day or so ago, and a dialog on the subject has ensued (out of respect for their privacy I won't share what everyone's thoughts are, but the discussion has been VERY positive).

The bottom line is, I'm torn. I HATE the idea of going back there, but I have such a strong desire to do so. It's still a long ways away, so I know that no matter what I decide, I may very well feel very differently months from now. But since we're talking about mid-December, I'd rather make arrangements sooner rather than later before the costs of making the trip get too high.

Does anyone have any insight they'd like to offer?


  1. Pat I understand your fear of going back to Florida, even to go out on the water where Aimee died, yes that is and would be a way to memorialize the one yr anniversary. I completely understand your fear, but to have your family and Aimee's family there, you all would be a great support for one another, as you all loved Aimee. Aimee was an amazing woman, mother friend and wife.

  2. If your gut is calling you to do this, and the rest of the family has been positive about this idea, it sounds like this might be what you should do. We'll pray that God gives you wisdom and guidance on this...

  3. It could be a good way to bring a close to this difficult year. Wherever you are, and whatever you decide to do, that day will be difficult. The bigger question will be how involved Rowan will be in this... should she go out on the boat, or stay ashore with someone? You may not know the answer until the moment before launch, so prepare to have someone available for her if there is a last minute change of plans. Also try not to have any expectation of how things will go for YOU. You could be stoic, numb, frantic, angry... Your supporting family must allow you to be alone or hysterical, if that is what you need, and hopefully you will not feel pressure to "keep it together" for others. At the end of the day, it may not have played out as you had planned, but the day will be over.

    Another option would be to start a new tradition with Rowan for that day (perhaps starting on the 2nd anniversary). Do something special that Aimee would have loved to be a part of, and consider her there in spirit with you. It could involve travel, or something closer to home.

    Whatever you choose to do, there will be many people thinking of you and praying for you.

    1. These are really great thoughts. Thank you.

  4. Hi Pat,

    Prayers for you to have peace with whatever you decide. I do wonder if going to Florida (this place that makes you feel sick and depressed) will help eliminate some of your fears and negative thoughts about the place. Almost conquering something that seems horrible in your mind, but may turn out to be a very cathartic experience, especially if you have all your family there for support.

    I also love the idea of starting a new tradition with Rowan in honor of Aimee. Perhaps planting a tree or rose bush or something that is beautiful that will continually be experiencing new life.

    Best to you...

  5. Hi Pat, I recently began following your story and my heart aches for what you and your daughter have been through. I can understand your hesitation to return, but I agree that you should follow your gut, especially when you have the support of your family. When I struggle with decisions (not anything compared to yours, of course) I do the "5 year check" When I look back in 5 years will I be glad I did it/upset I did. Something tells me in 5 years you will be glad you did this. And if you get there and change your mind you can catch the next plane home...I think your family would understand that, but it is probably worth the try. Prayers!