God saw you getting tired, and a cure was not to be. So he put His arms around you, and whispered, “Come to me.” With tearful eyes we watched you, as you slowly slipped away, and though we loved you dearly, we couldn’t make you stay. Your golden heart stopped beating. Your tired hands put to rest. God broke our hearts to prove to us, He only takes the best.
– God Saw You Getting Tired by Frances and Kathleen Coelho
Today, September 8, marks 118 days since my mother passed. The reason I know this exact day is the funeral home that catered to our family’s needs as we prepared for the burial of mom sends out a newsletter every day for support and inspiration. This group of dedicated people made the transition from life to death much easier for my family and me. I am very thankful for Hartquist Funeral services for all they have done for us and for how easy they made it for us during those very difficult days.
I reflect on this because of something that happened today that reminded me of her. I thought to myself that I should call my mom. I often did this when I had a commute to a client or across the city. I wanted to tell her about my new place, about my amazing new neighbors, and my landlord. I wanted to share that the girls that live below me are small-town girls just like me, moving into that city to experience a different perspective of life. I wanted to tell her that I am making it on my own, and I am happy and comfortable with all of the decisions I have made over the last year. After grabbing my phone, I realized that that call would not go through. Tears filled my eyes…
This was the first time that I had done that. Maybe it should’ve happened sooner, but I am certain with all of my life distractions, divorce, moving, work, clients, and life, I hadn’t experienced the change to have a normal routine. Now that I have a place to live, I find myself more relaxed, able to breathe and find my new normal. However, calling my mom is what used to be normal for me.
I am realizing now that I miss calling her and chatting about the gossip, things she knew I didn’t need to know of or care about, but she told me anyway. I enjoyed these moments we shared, and I knew that the gossip was her life. I would share about my future plans, adventure, homework and work. She often thought I was crazy and didn’t understand why I did so many of the things I did. I sometimes think she was living vicariously through me, especially when it came to traveling to out to the East Coast and to Europe. She was funny that way.
I talked to her sister a few months ago, and she said my mom felt awful that we didn’t have the relationship she would’ve liked. I know that we didn’t have the relationship most mothers and daughters have, but it worked for us nevertheless. My mother worked a lot when my brother and I were young. We didn’t have that same life most kids did. We worked hard on the farm, and looking back, it made me the person I am today. When I was younger, I didn’t have any interest in cooking, which was something my mom enjoyed more than anything: cooking for people. Now I find myself cooking for anyone that comes over. I am excited to have my own place to create food and to have Thanksgiving for friends who don’t have family in the area.
In the past, I didn’t see much of my mom in me, but now that I have had some time to grow up, I see that I am my mother’s child. I have many of her amazing qualities and some of her less than amazing ones, but I filter those as they become apparent to me. I am bits and pieces of both of my parents, and I am grateful for that. I have their strength and their compassion, two qualities that I deem respectable as I continue on with my life.
R.I.P. Mom… I love you, and I will never forget the moments we shared and the pieces of you that are now living through me.