Rituals of August 25

While not exactly obsessive compulsive (though I suppose it does depend on who you ask), I tend to have little rituals that I follow.  Not because I think anything bad will happen if I don't; so maybe it's just more of traditions rather than rituals.  For example, for the past 11 years I have worn the same shirt on my son's birthday and try to wear the same shorts, or at least the same color pants.  I always make a special frosty adult beverage after the late church service on Christmas Eve and consume in bed while watching "A Christmas Story."

Yesterday would have been my brother's 44th birthday.  When he was alive I didn't have any special rituals for the day.  As a matter of fact, I didn't always see him on his birthday. Although, as best as I can remember, I did always try to call.  (For most of our lives, we lived in the same town.  The exception to that rule being when we went away to college.)  But now that he is no longer around, I have developed several rituals.

I always wear a silver crab necklace.  Actually I wear it for most of the summer in tribute to my brother who was a big crab lover.  He loved to eat them; my son loves to catch them and then "race" them.  I wear the rainbow colored bracelet that his best friend made.  I wear the navy blouse, navy and white print skirt, and silver sailboat earrings that I wore on the day of his funeral.    

I change my Facebook profile photo to one of the two of us.  It was taken shortly after he came home from the hospital after being born.  I'm pretty cute in my pigtails, white t-shirt and plaid pants.  He doesn't look thrilled wrapped up in a baby blue blanket.  

Finally, I go to the cemetery on my way to work.  I don't stay long and I'm not sure why I go.  After all, it is just a physical place and in my mind my brother's spirit isn't really there.  But I go, just as I do on the anniversary of his passing.  

When I was there yesterday, I saw two deer.  I didn't see them as I pulled up and I didn't spot them right away.  I'm thinking it was a mother and her fawn.  The fawn moved away a bit, but the other deer just stood there.  The two of us just stared at each other.  I went back to my car to get my phone/camera.  The deer did not move.  I took this photo:
 The deer still did not move.  I walked towards her.  We still stared at each other.  Once I got just a few feet away from her, the fawn suddenly moved back towards the doe.  At this they both bounded off into another section of the cemetery.  (Leaping over some tombstones in the process.)

I got back in my car and went to work.  The day progressed as any other would.  

I pass by the cemetery nearly every week day, as it's on my way to work.  But I really only "stop in" on those two days.  It has become a ritual for me.  A ritual which I am not sure has any real purpose, but one that I will continue, just because...

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