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Mother’s Day

As my sister and, honestly anyone that has ever met me even once can attest, this holiday is a tough one. In the days that lead up to it I can be short tempered and easily emotional, letting all the pain loss be felt, whether I realize it at the time or not. This year has been different though. This year it surprised me in a new way.

While having breakfast with my wife yesterday, I put down my fork and quietly said “I’ve never really thought about how hard Mother’s Day must have been for my parents. I can’t even imagine”

I’ve spent more of my life than not, 26 years to be exact, grieving my mother’s illness and subsequent death.  Nearly all the choices I’ve made or failed to make can be attributed to that grief. My life was profoundly affected by the experience of losing her and everyone I’m close with knows that.

What they may not know is that my parents lost their mothers on the same day in the same year.  That’s right, both mother and mother-in-law suddenly and unexpectedly gone on the same day in 1972 when my dad was just 34 and my mom 29 (a year younger than I was when she passed). I wrote about my 4yr old memory of that day in here The Day I Picked Iron Man and My Grandmas Died. Truth really is stranger than fiction.

How could they have possibly endured that?  I’ve limped my way through the past quarter century hamstrung by my sadness and have spent every Mother’s Day feeling loss rather than celebrating who she was.

Today is different though. Today is about the gratitude I feel for both my parents. Today is about assuring them that their mothers would be so proud of them and the lives they’ve lived. Today is about thanking them for the tenacity they had to live through such incredible losses and still give my sister and me an amazing life.

Thank you, Mom and Dad. Happy Mother’s Day ❤

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2 thoughts on “Mother’s Day

  1. Sheila Greenhaw says:

    I remember those days vividly. Grandma Gage was my mentor and guide. When she passed away I was somewhat shell shocked, being 18 and having spent much time with her. I also had met your other Grandmother, and remember what a tiny dynamo she was, a busy determined little Catholic mother who’s family – her only daughter and grandaughters were her world. When we were told that she also had died on that same day, I was stunned. I made known I wanted to go to her funeral, the first time I had been in a Catholic church service, I think. But I wanted to go to support Uncle Bob and Aunt Mary. You were both so little and it was hard to say at the time how you were absorbing what had happened. But as an adult who lost my Dad at the age of 31, I can tell you that it is shocking and life impacting. You never forget, but your life moves on and it becomes part of your story. Faith has helped me, I have this image of Grandma in Heaven in a little cottage, working in the garden, and your other Grandma just down the golden streets organizing the angels or some such. My Dad is there, young and able to hear, the Gage Uncles I never got to meet as they died too soon, are there waiting.
    However, pull a little child on your lap and enjoy the vibrancy of life now. Its what your Mom did. Love you.

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    • Thank you so much for sharing your memories Sheila. And, I love the idea of all our family members we lost too soon being together, watching over each other and us. I feel very fortunate to have some amazing little ones in my life that remind me how to be present in every moment. Happy Mother’s Day ❤️

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