Definition: the state or feeling of grief when deprived of someone or something of value.
All of you know that the day after Christmas 2015, our family went through a pretty life-changing experience when mother nature sent an F4 tornado our way.
What many of you may not know, almost three weeks later, my mom passed away. She had been battling a recurrence of endometrial cancer. We found out just before Christmas that it was terminal and spreading fast.
She was living with my sister and her family, and when we found ourselves suddenly homeless after the tornado, my sister opened her home to us as well. We were there for just over 2 weeks until an apartment became available. While that time was hectic and stressful, it was also time that we got to spend with mom that we otherwise wouldn’t have had. The day we moved into our apartment she took a turn for the worse and we called in hospice. She passed away on January 15th with my sister and I both holding her hands.
As we near Mother’s Day, the wound left from her passing hurts again. I guess in a way the stress of the tornado and dealing with that has shielded me some from the pain of losing mom. Not to say it wasn’t or isn’t still painful, but I think my emotional state has been somewhat numbed by the magnitude of all that happened in such a short period of time. My sister has carried the load, dealing with the paperwork and all the things that had to be dealt with when she passed. I will be forever grateful and guilt-ridden for leaving it to her.
My mom was a unique woman. She was born and raised in England. After school, she went to Germany as a Nanny and eventually got a job at a local hospital as a charge nurse where she met my dad – he was stationed in Germany as a Medic in the Army. It must’ve been love at first sight, because not long after, they went to England, got married and he brought his new bride back to Texas!
Think about how brave she was! Leaving her family in her late teens to go work in a foreign country. Then leaving them again to forge a new life in America! She and my dad lived in the Dallas area until they started their family. And with 2 kids under the age of two, she and my dad opened up a flower shop in the small town of Burkburnett, Texas. We officially closed the flower shop last Thanksgiving, just a few months shy of what would have been its 40th Anniversary this February.
- She taught me it is ok to take chances.
- She taught me to use proper grammar.
- She taught me spelling is important.
- She taught me to enjoy small pleasures.
- She taught me to lose myself in books.
- She taught me to appreciate classical music.
- She taught me there is nothing more soothing than a good cup of tea.
- She taught me to ask questions (lots and lots of questions).
- She taught me about small acts of kindness.
- She taught me too much to include in this little blog post.
As this weekend approaches, we will continue to remember momma in little ways. We’ll listen to some Classical music really loud while cleaning the apartment top to bottom, grill a good steak (medium rare), enjoy some tea (with milk and sugar) along with a Cadbury’s Fruit & Nut chocolate bar.
I know right now she and dad are watching over us and both are immensely glad I waited to dye my hair purple until they were gone! And their legacy is driving how I’m raising their grandchildren. I know they are guiding me as we navigate the way back into our home and are whispering to me to pick myself up and keep going on tough days.
Happy Mother’s Day Momma! I’m sure Daddy is spoiling you up there in Heaven!