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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Thank You, Mom.




I see you, Mother.

You are mine. A gift.


I take a minute to see of all the good in you, and it takes many minutes as one memory leads to another.

Minutes tick, memories come, and I know some of the most life- giving and life-serving moments you gave me, are the ones that I have no memory of.

I see Mom, young

The moments you spent with me as a babe, nursing & bathing.  Whispering sweet nothings and singing melodies.  I know you sang to me with that beautiful voice of yours, so beautiful that at one point in time you traveled and shared with others your melodic singing voice.

You have told me so many times that some of your favorite memories are of us as babes, on your hip.  You would recount the memories and start to bounce, and I can picture it years before, Mother bouncing daughter on her hip.  A mother's hip, the perfect perch, a shapely mold made for bouncing babies.

I grow, as do my 4 siblings, and Mother grows busy.  I now am grown and have 3 of my own, and I, too, have grown busy.  How oh Mom, did you do it with 5?

I know you sacrificed.  I know you spent days serving.  Constant mouths to feed and bills to pay and house to clean, laundry to fold.  So many underlying worries that I was too young to understand.

You did her best and yet would say your best was not good enough.  Don't we all, us Mothers, feel this way? I disagree, Mommy, I saw your best.  What more can one do but their best?

I see Mom, sad.  

The day wedding ring slipped & flew across the floor and disappeared forever in an air vent. You walked committed to a marriage, with a finger naked too many years.  Oh if only I were older then and known better, I would find a way to get a ring right back on that finger.  I would make you one if I had to,  for I know this absent ring broke your heart and you longed for the symbol of completeness and commitment. These things matter to us women.  I am now woman and I play with my own wedding ring as I pause from writing, thinking of your pain.  I remember your beautiful ring, and those long elegant fingers, and I too, now mourn.  I mourn for what became and how your heart broke when marriage broke and the pain nearly split you in half.  I mourn that I was not able to comfort you in your pain, for broken marriages bring pain to whole families, and my own paralyzed, as did my age.


I see Mom, happy.  

You sing silly.  Do YOUR Ears Hang Low? Do They Wobble To & Fro? Can You Tie Them In A Knot, Can You Tie Them In a Bow? and How Much Is That Doggy In The Window?  I hear your giggle, I see at times your child-like delight in the quirky details that to many walk through this life and miss.  I see you embrace the part of yourself that is free spirit, I learn to let go of my control as I watch you delight in the free.

I see Mom, most loyal.

One of the most precious gifts you have shown to me is how to be loyal.  You never speak ill of your children, especially from one of your children to another.  You do not judge us.  You are not a gossip.  I know I can share with you and you will keep it to yourself.

I see Mom, forgiving.

In many ways, but one specific is we both know I can be so slow in returning phone calls.  Your forbearance in this makes me want to call.  I will show the same grace to my children, for I have learned from you.


I see Mom, scared yet strong.

You are a Mom who has had the dreaded phone call.  "Your daughter has cancer."  I so didn't want to tell you knowing the pain it would bring.  You were there, watching as chemical chemo dripped, as nurses poke, as Oncologist joked about my heart rate "as fast as a train." You watched as I woke from one of many surgeries, high on morphine.  You tell of how scared you were when I was not responsive, how eyes rolled back, an image that would scare any Mother.  You are this image burden bearer.


You rejoiced with me in the mall when we got the call that scan was clear, you held my heart when I crumbled in the doctors office when we were told the second scan was not.  It was you who I wanted to feed me ice as I woke up from mastectomy surgery.  I think of how strong you had to be in that waiting room, as your daughter was getting cut on and cancer was getting cut out.  I think of how beautiful and symbolic it is, when I lost my bosom, you offer me the comfort of yours in all your actions.  You were there.  You fed my family your famous sloppy joes, you helped me organize my basement which gave me the feeling of order and control when life was spinning. You put away all my Christmas decorations.  You held my gross drains and helped me dress.

 Your texts to me in the night were at times the only thing that could comfort when I was so scared and so sick.  All Day All Night, Angels Watching Over Me the same song you would sing to me when bouncing bald babe on your hip, is the one that you text your now grown bald babe.  "Angels are watching over you my sweet Amy" your text would read.  Nights in a row I would get that same text and comfort came from you to me and I would drift off with angels watching.

One of my most favorite cancer memories was with you, when I took off my scarf to show you my shaved, bald head.  I moved slowly, thought you would break down.  Instead, a twinkle in your eye, then a grunt as you tried to hold in your laugh, then we both bust up laughing.  Oh how I loved that!  I laugh out loud as I write even in this moment.  You spared me the sympathy eyes, you spared me your tears, and you gave me the best medicine--laughter. 


People say I am strong from this battle
I am.  But not just from this battle, but from watching your strength as you have battled what this broken world brings.

I have looked, I have learned.

I see you, Mom, in me.


Happy Mothers Day!



13 comments:

  1. That is ABSOLUTELY the most amazingly heartfelt tribute EVER.... what a wonderful relationship you have... and it's such a testimony to the kind of woman she raised... Happy Mother's Day to YOU BOTH!

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  2. This is so touching, I just got home from speaking at my best friends funeral 5 1/2 year battle. This is beautiful, thank you for sharing.

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  3. What a beautiful, sweet, and wonderful tribute to your mother! Thanks so much for sharing this!

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  4. Thanks for sharing! I am just beginning the battle against breast cancer. I had a double mastectomy 3 weeks ago. Unfortunately, I cannot be comforted by my mom as she is 91 and has had a stroke and just could not handle this type of news as she seems to get caught in a loop when she gets scared or sad and cannot think of anything else. So, I am wearing baggy tops and don't hug her too tight and try and put on a brave face when I am with her, but I wish I could lay in her arms and cry - the way I used to as a babe!

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  5. Beautiful tribute. Love this. I wrote a tribute to my mother this year on my blog as well.

    All the happy memories. http://macymemoirs.blogspot.com/

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  6. This is absolutely beautiful! Here I was on Mother's Day-eve feeling a little sorry for myself because I lost my mom to breast cancer. Your writing was so descriptive that it took me on journey through the wonderful relationship you share with your loving mom. I appreciate you sharing this. Instead of mourning I will do my best to think of the good times and celebrate her life instead. Wishing you all the very best!

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  7. Love this! Read it and teared up a second time haha. Love that picture of mom with the maps - so adorable! Thanks for writing this, Am. By the way - happy mothers day to you too - wish I could be there to shop with you! Have fun and send me pics of what you buy:)

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  8. This is the nicest love letter I ever read to a mom. Your Mom is a special person, this is what made you so special a mom like her. Happy Mothersday to you and your Mom

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  9. I love this! Happy Mother's Day Blessings to you.

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  10. This is such a wonderful tribute to a wonderful mom! It makes me want to be a better mother figure to everyone in my life! You were very blessed to have such a wonderful mom and we can see that her strengths are in you too. God bless you both on this Mother's Day!

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  11. Oh Amy! I only know you through your posts but I love you girl. You and your mom are both so pretty. What a treasure you are to your Mother. A very Happy Mothers Day to you.

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  12. My mom has been the exact same way. I could not have summed up my mother strength better! I only hope I am being half the mom she has been to me. We have both been blessed with wonderful, supportive, strong mothers. I hope you had a great mother's day.

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  13. WOW! Got a little teary-eyed reading this dedication to your mother! Moms, like yours and mine, are amazing! They are strong pillars of faith and wisdom and understanding! I would not be ME with HER and clearly the same is true for your S-hero! God Bless!

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Thank you so much for your lovely words to me! Due to the number of comments I receive, I cannot respond to all of them - but know that I read and love every word. If you have a question in need of a response, please e-mail sponsornewnostalgia@gmail.com and either Robyn or I will get back to you.