In June of 2013, doctors diagnosed my mom with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. Exactly two months to the date of diagnosis, my mother passed away in her sleep in the middle of the night.
She was an amazing woman who told the doctors, and everyone else, she was grateful that the diagnosis gave her time to say her good-byes. Her mother, her father, and her husband had not been as fortunate in her eyes. After her mother’s death, my mom planned her own funeral and had almost completely paid for it. She had even put a note into her funeral folder that my ex-husband, if he should appear at the funeral, would be escorted out.
I’ve had so many people tell me that I am just like my mother. I thank them, but in my eyes, if I can only be half the person my mother was, I’d be grateful. She was involved in every aspect of her church; she loved going to theater productions; she donated time and money to worthy causes; and she traveled the world. She was proud (more than I ever knew) of her grandchildren, her daughter (me), and her current son-in-law. She believed, when she turned 70 or so, that she had lived long enough to say exactly what she thought, but she always did it tactfully.
I miss my mom daily, and I know that she is always here with me in spirit. I smile at the cardinals I see and collect the pennies I find. They always appear at the times when I am the lowest.
If you are a mother, remember to create memories with your children and teach them how to exist in this world with grace and poise. If you are a child, show your mother that you appreciate everything she does for you.
Today was Mother’s Day. One day set aside for children to show appreciation of their mother. One day? Maybe we need to carry the idea of appreciation into our daily lives. “And what,” you ask, “did your children give you for Mother’s Day?” You’ll be surprised. They gave me the gift of conversation. You see the closest one, a step-daughter, lives three hours away; the furthest, ten and a half hours. Their lives are busy (I remember being a busy parent.) so their time in a phone call meant more than any card or flowers or expensive dinner out.