Thursday, February 28, 2008


Thirty years ago today my life changed forever. My mother passed from this earth quite quickly and unexpectedly.  I was about to turn 23 in another month.  I had a 15 month old son, and an alcoholic husband.  I was too young to even imagine life without my mother and now I have spent my entire adult life without her there to comfort and guide me. In one month I will be 5 years older than my mom was when she died.
My sister and I barely functioned after mom died. I had come to stay at my mom and dad's house to help take care of my younger brothers while mom was in hospital.  She was only there for two weeks.  I will never forget how I felt the day I stopped by the hospital on my way home and my mom was in the bathroom, she was throwing up, so I told her roommate I would be back later.  Well, she was never fully aware of anything again.  They took her to a hospital in St. Louis.

I had a 15month old son, my sister had a 10 year old son and an 8 year old daughter.  My mom had three sons at home, one about to turn 18, one 13 and a ten year old.  While my sister and I could barely function, we had to be able to take care of all these children and be there for my dad who had just lost his beloved wife.

My mother gave me so much in the short years that I was so blessed to have her.  She was kind, loving, tolerant and full of fun.  She taught me the things necessary to be a great mom, kindness, tolerance and a great capacity for love. My mother loved Christmas and truly taught us how to keep Christmas in our hearts. When I began having night terrors when I was about 16, my mom would get out of bed and run into my room to try to comfort me, Or to at least wake me up so that I wouldn't be screaming in the middle of the night! But she was always there. Now, I still have night terrors but there is no one there to give me comfort.  She gave me great advice on the art of dating, and I know I probably disappointed her many times during my teenage years, yet she was always there to cry with me when I was sad and to laugh with me when I was happy.
  I can't believe that she has been gone for 30 years. My son, who is now 31, stayed with my mom during the day while I worked and he really has no recollection of her.   I know that I am the person I am today because of the foundation of love, respect and value of family that I received from my mom.   I can still see her beautiful smile, and I still feel the warmth of her heart when I am in need of her.

My sister not only had her own kids to raise, she became for me the person that I could talk to when I was in need of a mother. I treasure her. 

I miss my mother everyday.  

The art of mothering is to teach the art of living to children. Elaine Heffner O magazine 2003

 If this be the case my mother was a terrific teacher.


The Every Day Dad said...

What a wonderful post. I'll make sure and call my mom today and tell her how wonderful she is.

moon-grrl said...

I'm thinking about you, S. Hugs!

spotted dog farm said...

she clearly left you a wonderful legacy of love that you've been able to pass on. you live from such a full heart - thanks for sharing it.

Anonymous said...

Sigh. I should call talk to my mom more.