Cemetery Cheer

IMG_4503I know this is a strange subject. Who goes around talking about cemeteries? Well, if you grew up in my family, it seemed visits to graveyards appeared on our schedules. As a writer of historical fiction, I find cemeteries and records as an excellent source for plots, dates, facts, and characters.

A recent conversation at my local post office started me thinking about this subject and how other people might view cemeteries. The conversation went something like this:

Post Mistress: I saw you walking this week.

Me: I’m not surprised. I love to walk around the neighborhood.

Post Mistress: But I wouldn’t do that.

Me: Oh, I don’t go at night unless I’m with my husband.

Post Mistress: I wouldn’t walk where you walk even with my husband at any time of day.

Me: Why not?

Post Mistress: The cemetery. How can you walk around it? I hate even driving around it.

Then, I understood. It wasn’t the time of day or the neighborhood or walking alone. The cemetery was the culprit and all that it symbolized in her thoughts. I wanted to give her my positive spiel about all my fun experiences associated with graveyards, for I realized she had her own opinions for a reason. So, I chuckled to myself as I left the Post Office and went for a walk around the cemetery.

My experiences with cemeteries go way back to childhood as my parents, my sisters, and I explored family plots, old cemeteries in foreign countries and domestic destinations, even catacombs in Rome and Paris. Nothing scary or Halloween-like.

Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here.” Luke 24:5-6

A promise of resurrection from Jesus for His followers. Not anything to fear! His promises always come true.

So, I continue my walks around the cemetery. I’m on our old cemetery’s board where I get to care for the headstones and the grounds. My parents and my faith provide a healthy relationship with cemeteries where memories, tears, prayers, and history collide…but not fear…

What are your thoughts about cemeteries?