Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Bittersweet Celebration

Can you believe I've been at this blogging thing for 4 years now? Thank you all for reading and sharing!

What you might not realize though is that March 31st is a day that I always try to be happy. Because before I started this blog, it was my Mom's birthday. Mom died when I was 9 and in October, it will mark 30 years of her being gone. I can't believe she's been gone so long. Or I can't believe how old I am. Maybe a little of both.

Mom would have turned 7...wait. That's not right. I can't out her age on here. After all, when she passed away, I truly believed she was just 29. When I read her obituary in the newspaper, it said she was 42. I became very angry and told all the grieving adults around me that the paper got it wrong. "She wasn't 42! She was 29!" The only shred of humor shining through such a dark time. It was then that I learned it was ok for women to fib about their age after a certain point. I never thought of doing so myself. Until this year. In June, I turn 29 again. Just so you know.

Every single day of my life, she's been on my mind. Maybe not all day, but at points throughout my day. And of course, not all the thoughts I have about her are sad ones. I think of funny things too, like the time we were at a petting zoo and a goat tried to eat her long jean skirt. I can still hear her laughter in my brain, like the sweetest melody I ever heard. I think of how she once caught me eating all the brownies for breakfast because I'd woken up too early and didn't want to bother her. I wheeled one of our 70s-style kitchen table chairs on over to the counter, climbed on up and used a butter knife to slice off some brownie. But I couldn't resist and ate just about the whole entire tray before she found me. Instead of being angry, she laughed and made me a real breakfast.

I cling with every fiber of my being to the memories I have of her. I only had 9 years with her and like most people, I can't really recall much before age 4. They've all jumbled together over time, becoming fuzzier and fuzzier with every year. But I can't forget her kind nature or her spirit. Sometimes, as I watch my daughters sleeping, I think of her and how much she'd love them. How hard she'd laugh if she could see the videos I've made of them doing adorable things. What she'd want me to tell them as they grow up.

It's not fair she has to miss out on this. But maybe she's not. Maybe she's been here the whole time, watching over us, smiling as we smile. Laughing as we laugh. Maybe she's the reason I'm still here. She's certainly the reason I'm here at all.

Happy 29th Birthday, Mom!
This old photo, sent to me by my Cousin David, is so lovely to me. My dad still looks this handsome! Maybe he knows what restaurant we're in, but clearly, we're in one. Daddy is sitting with Mom and my Great Aunt Ann, who I also miss terribly.

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