11 May 2014

This is my mom; the picture was taken somewhere around 1970 while we were living in Germany.

Those are teabags pinned to her shirt.

It's her t-shirt.

Yes, she was a walking dad joke. And trust me, in 1970 that was hysterical, and shows just a fleeting glimpse of her sense of humor.

I think because there were more opportunities to be involved--the American communities overseas were pretty tight back then--she was an incredibly active and involved person. She loved being a member of the Wives' Club and for a time served as its president. She was a room mother, she chaperoned trips, once to Berlin when it was still a tricky trip to make. She organized fund raisers for the schools, and once even spearheaded a drive to raise money for a desperately needed fire truck in a town in Washington...and did it while we were still in Munich.

If I recall correctly, the money was raised.

When we moved back to the U.S., she wasn't nearly as involved, but a lot of that was because we were all older and there were fewer chances to do things for our classes and schools, though she did keep up with the Wives' Club.

She was as social as she could be, until the last 20 years, I think. I don't know if she got tired, lacked places to go with friends to whom she was close, or if she was just done. I used to think she was weighed down my my dad's increasing agoraphobia, but I'm not so sure now.

Maybe she wanted it that way.

I hope she did.

I miss her. Some of the time it surprises me how much I miss her. Still, I can't sit here and say I will miss her more on Mother's Day and feel terribly sad, because I won't.

How can I? I believe there's something after this life, and in that I believe she's where she's not old, not fighting dementia, not ill or angry or frightened. I believe that she's the woman standing on the stage, showing her t-shirt to the crowd, happy and clear-headed, and laughing her asterisk off.

This is her first Mother's Day not here.

Together, we tortured the poor kitty, Ataturk ;)
Her first in a very long time with her own mother.

Yes, it sucks that we don't have her here anymore, and the idea that it's Mother's Day and mine is gone feels a bit odd...but I can't feel sad about it, because she's just fine where she is.

I can't miss her more than I do on any other day.

But I do miss her.

I suspect I always will.

And that's a gift, my friends. That's one hell of a gift.


Dawn Brayton said...

The Tea shirt joke was a groaner, loved it. Thanks for sharing the picture and joke. Your mom's sense of humor was totally cool. And there's a absolutely nothing wrong with those kinds of jokes. Actually, with what passes for a whole lot of what is called humor nowadays we need more of her sort of jokes.

Bella said...

This is also my first Mother's Day without my Mother. It's a strange feeling to be without her.

Angel and Kirby said...

It is very hard on Mothers Day when our mothers are gone!

Miss Julie said...

Wonderfully said. Happy Mother's Day to you.

Victoria Henderson said...

For some reason I always picture your mom as more... Mom-shaped? Mom-ish? I don't know. Then I see a pic and am reminded your aren't too shabby with words and images, so if I "see" her that way, it's because you've done a damned fine job of portraying her as "a Mom."