This week will mark a new first anniversary for me. The first “anniversary” of my mother’s death. Echoes of the genteel South dictate that I should call it her ‘passing’, 70’s rebellion calls for ‘kick the bucket’ and general good manners seem to reject ‘died’. But for this point in my life, quite honestly I just refer to it as ‘when she died’. She died on a Friday, Friday the 13th to be exact. I wasn’t superstitious before, and this event did not change that. But it is somewhat ironic. Actually I didn’t even put the Friday and the 13th part together until sometime later. Maybe because I actually found out on the 14th, I don’t know.
I live many miles away from my parents – so I don’t have the daily reminders that she’s gone (unlike my sister). At first when we got back home from the funeral, life was such a whirlwind of summer activities for the kids, school started back up, with two of them in new schools that required getting acclimated, and then the holidays came. Life was full and though I missed her, my “routine” was uninterrupted.
Then after the first of the year my father came to visit. He stayed with my brother who lives in the same town. My father is an amazing man. Married for almost 60 years to my Mom, and nearly blind with macular degeneration disease, he has been so solid throughout this. Though he misses my Mom, he has made a conscious decision to go on living – and living it to the full.
It seems that since then though, I think of her more and more. My thoughts ramble like a chipmunk in a bramble patch. I want to tell her about accomplishments with the kids (and me), milestones reached (like my son driving). Questions about dealing with teenagers, apologizing for my own teenage moodiness, thanking her for patience with my driving, telling her about the trees we took down, all kinds of things I want to say.
By the way, why is it called an anniversary? I’ve always thought of anniversaries as happy occasions, but we use the same word to mark any event of significance – good or bad. Think about it, we use the same word for marking years of marriage that we do for remembering terrorist attacks. Hmm. . .
I’m not particularly morose or bitter or depressed. I don’t even know which stage of grief I’m in. I just know that I live day to day. I have a loving family who surrounds me with reality, and a Heavenly Father who I trust in.
Bye Mom – I love you.
Labels: anniversary, missing mom, sadness, Sheila Siler