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Life Goes On After My Mother's Passing

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My mom’s birthday was last Friday, May 26th, 2017. Memorial Day was just a few days ago. It is the mark of another summer and another season. My mom would have been 75 years young if she was still alive.

I often wonder what my life would be like if she had not passed away in 1987.

I lost her at a young age, I was 13.

I look at a picture I have of my mom and she is seated at a dining room table with my Baba (my dad’s mom) and my Gram (my mom’s mom.) My Baba and my Gram both lived long lives, and they suffered the pain of  being alive when my mom died. That had to be incredibly hard for them as they were extremely close to my mom, and also close to one another.

I wonder what my mom and I would be like today? Would we get along? Would we talk a lot? Would we talk a little? Would we have a lot in common? Would she be proud? Would my path in life be different? I remember my mom and her relationship with both, her mother and her mother-in-law. And I remember their grief after her passing. I will never know what our relationship would have been like, but I do know I will forever miss her.

I can remember feeling at a young age that life would not go on. I felt seasons would not change. I couldn’t imagine life happening without my mom; it couldn’t be possible.

I understood why babies cried so hard when their moms left the room; I understood what separation anxiety meant. Later, when I had my babies, I hugged them extra tight “just because.” I, too, cried when I left my kids. There’s forever an extra hole in my heart that can’t be filled by anything. There’s an extra worry, an extra void, an extra seat at the table.

Some people say that during the fall and winter months they become very sad; I find it the opposite for me. It is the spring and summer months of change that bring on the reminders.

But then glorious things start to emerge, they’re called children. I had two daughters. They start to grow, each in their own way, very differently. Little gifts, I swear, sent straight from my mom herself. Some days they teach me lessons in life, some days they teach me what it is to be a Mom and some days I imagine what it was like to be her. Some days they remind me being a parent is to love unlike any love there ever is. Some days have tears. And then some days I look at a picture of myself and think I am around the age my mom was at her time of death.

My favorite picture of my girls and I is framed in my front entrance so I can see it every time we walk in the front door. What I see is us smiling, and we’re all wearing matching “Super Girl” t-shirts. We’re eating ice cream and it’s the warmer months. Everything is OK for that moment in time.

Life is good.

Life goes on, doesn’t it?

And this is a “super” thing.

Happy Birthday Mom!

In Memory of Audrey Elizabeth. May26, 1943- November 14, 1987

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Originally published: June 2, 2017
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