Tuesday, Feb. 01, 2005 | 8:50 a.m.



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The tattoo is a design Jeff created last year while Jasmine was dying. He wove her name into it -- I'm messing with Photoshop to see if I can find a way to make it more obvious. It's hard to see if you don't know where to look.

We're in the countdown to the year anniversary. To say I've been thinking about Jasmine a lot would be an understatement. With everything else that's going on, I've been on emotional overload for much of the month of January. We have our first appointment with the marriage counselor on the 22nd. I am afraid she is going to try to chalk all this up to grief, and that's not it. For certain the grief has exacerbated things greatly, but the issues we are struggling with predate Jasmine's death. Some of them predate Jasmine, period. I hope she gets that better in person than she did on the phone, or we won't be working with her long. Anyway, that's not what this entry is about.

For the past year, the presence of the medical world has been pretty much absent from our lives. It's been a weird adjustment, not having all those doctors, nurses and therapists around. A good thing. When I went to camp this past fall, I had an opportunity to chose a tarot image that attracted me. The one I chose showed a somewhat androgynous creature breaking free/falling from a tree. It looked like a mix of the Tower card and the Hanged Man card. It felt perfect. When I had to articulate why I chose the card, I said that it reminded me of what our family was going through -- simulataneously falling and breaking free.

Recently I have been feeling grateful for Jasmine's death. Typing that sentence is hard because I feel guilty for feeling grateful. I feel like I have to rush to explain. It's not that I wanted Jasmine to die -- of course I'd rather have her with me -- but I am grateful that neither she nor we have to fight cystic fibrosis anymore. Whatever I may know about death, I absolutely know that she is not in a body with sick lungs anymore. That burden is gone. The image of her flying free -- the dragonfly -- is strong and true. As much as I miss her, I would much rather that be her reality than being trapped in a sick body.

This weekend Jeff took the girls to my parents' house. I took the opportunity to clean off the top of my dresser, which serves as Jasmine's altar. I am ashamed to say it had gotten a little cluttered, but that won't happen anymore. I made it clear that it is an altar, sacred space for Jasmine, and not to be profaned with piles of money, receipts or any other pocket debris. Here's a picture:

We have more things to add to it, but for now, it's her place.

On Friday, I read through last year's journal entries at this time. It was wrenching to remember how I felt then, feel how I feel now... miss Jasmine so much. Everywhere I go, still, I see things that I know she would have loved and I want to show them to her. I laugh at things she would have laughed at and want to laugh with her. I cry remembering how tired she was of being sick all the time and am grateful she was released.

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Recent Entries ...
Go Here - Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2006
Short, But Sad Good-bye - Sunday, Oct. 16, 2005
Jasmine's Story ... Our Story - Friday, Sept. 30, 2005
Ache - Thursday, Sept. 29, 2005
Twists & Turns - Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2005

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