Today there is no recipe. No giggling, crazy Lunatic. Today marks the anniversary of my Mom’s passing. I thought sharing some words and pictures with you to mark the occasion would be a nice way to share a bit more about my life with you. My Mom passed away a long time ago. I was 15 when she died. She was 47. It was March 5th, 1984. I can remember it like it was yesterday. The day that changed everything.
My Mom was one of those people who was always up for a laugh. She enjoyed having fun and getting silly. The running joke was it wasn’t a party till the girls got loaded and took their teeth out. For some reason they thought this was absolutely hilarious to do. I cannot tell you how many pictures of my mother we have where she’s absolutely tipsy and toothless. Quite an odd memory but one I was reminded of today by photos that popped up of her on facebook.
We entertained ourselves differently back in the day. We would all sit around the table and my mom and aunts would pull out a tape recorder and we would make up songs and commercials and do skits on it. Hours and hours of amusement. We would do just about anything to make each other laugh. I have such fond memories of those days.
I think my Mom was hell-bent on making the most of the time she had. She tried hard to make us kids laugh and have fun in life. Our lives were a bit difficult, not the easiest of childhoods. Without getting too in-depth I’ll just say my Dad was a hard man, difficult to live with. My Mom seemed to go out of her way to make up for that, to lighten our load even though her own was heavy. Looking back on it now I am not sure where she found the strength to always put on a happy face to greet the day. She was our protector and our friend, not quite your typical mother. She hung out with our friends and made them laugh. She wanted to know what went on in our lives. And she shielded us from an overbearing (don’t get me wrong, I loved my Dad) father whose standards were impossible to reach. He would ground us and she would let us go out the second he was gone. He would tell us not to hang out with certain kids, and she would have those kids over for lunch. She didn’t do it to be defiant, he never knew, she did it to give us a more normal childhood. Otherwise we’d have never had one. I am grateful to her for making sure we were allowed to be kids.
I also think back and wonder how she tolerated us. She did everything. Honestly when she passed none of us knew how to cook or clean. I don’t even remember making my own bed. She was the housewife you read about back in the day. Did it all, put up with it all and was quite likely miserable doing it. I am not sure we ever told her how much we appreciated her, or loved her. We weren’t a demonstrative type of family. Hugs were not something we did. Feelings were not something we did. Looking back if there was one thing I could change I think that would be it. But you can’t go back, only forwards.
I miss her, and no amount of time makes it hurt less. I think as time passes our coping skills just improve. I wish she had known my kids. She would have been an amazing grandmother to them and my brother’s kids. They will never have the memories I have of her. That makes my heart hurt.
I remember her riding on the rotor at Bob-Lo Island and sliding down yelling for them to stop the ride.
I remember her on vacation in the Rockies running like Rocky Balboa and singing the theme song in her sling back sandals she insisted on hiking in, falling a** over tea kettle down the slope while we all watched in horror then died laughing when we knew she was okay.
I remember her sitting on top of me and pinning my arms down while trying to look at my skin and us laughing like complete lunatics at how absurd we were.
I remember her sitting on the patio and hanging out like the cool mom with my boyfriend, who she admitted she hated when she pulled me into the garage to tell me to date the other dude who was with him, “you know that C’Paul fellow”. I am now married to that dude.
I remember sneaking out of the camper to feed the deer bread we were suppose to be eating for breakfast, she was so happy that day.
I remember being at a gas station with a canteen and we were grabbing drinks when the lady slammed the partition down, we turned around to see a bear behind us. I remember trying to reach out to pet the “cute little bear”, while my Mom tried to get me behind her till my Dad brought the car to save us.
I remember going to the drive in with her when the guys went camping and we stayed out late and ate all kinds of stuff my Dad didn’t let us eat. We ordered pizza that weekend and ate popcorn and let the house look a fright. Was an amazing weekend.
I remember feeding a chipmunk on a family vacation and talking about it for weeks after.
I remember her taking me to horseback riding lessons and smiling the whole time we were there. I was made to quit after a short time. I grew up and bought my own horse. She would have loved that.
Who we become is shaped so much by our moms. It is also shaped so much by the events in our childhood. I wouldn’t really change a thing about how we grew up otherwise I wouldn’t be me. But I’d give up anything in the world to have a couple more hours to talk to my Mom now that I’m an adult. There are so many things I’d like to ask her. To tell her. But we can’t go back, only forward.
This is something I have etched into a stone in our yard, in her garden. I picked it up at a gift store. I also have a similar one in my Dad’s garden. We bought my folks home and have a garden dedicated to each of them. This is on the stone in my Mom’s:
We thought of you today,
But that is nothing new.
We thought of you yesterday
And will tomorrow, too.
We think of you in silence
And make no outward show.
For what it meant to lose you
Only those who love you know.
Remembering you is easy,
We do it everyday.
It’s the heartache of losing you
That will never go away.
Toodles and smoochies! xx