My relationship with my mom was deep and far reaching. When housed within someone’s body for 9 months, you get to know one another from a most primal perspective. I felt our attachment the moment she laid eyes on me. Even though in later years she teased me about being adopted because my almond shaped eyes were unlike hers or my dad’s. Her bear hugs told me everything I needed to know about being loved.
More through actions than words, she taught me the serious side of life; responsibility, hard work, social consciousness. I was taught that people should be afforded equal opportunities to better themselves. My mother was against violence, and a breath of fresh air in a neighborhood otherwise filled with status-quo behavior and stagnant thinking. I was proud to have a mom so global, independent, and outspoken. She taught me to stick up for what I believed and she was in the armed forces in World War II. Innovative and irreverent, she was far from perfect, yet I seem to remember the good things.
We listened to Joan Baez and Bob Dylan, singly loudly and with a sense of purpose. Our entanglements with the petty sides of life got re-framed through the benefit of distance. When my mother bought me a gift, she would feign indignity and tell me to “Get into your room” with a point and a scowl. We both knew it was a ruse for the present I was about to receive. We had a lot of fun together. But there were bad times too. When you and Dad split, it was horribly sad. You cried often and I would try to cheer you, and be a good girl, but I was afraid too. On the flip side, it allowed me the depth of feeling and thought to write poetry. My writing has remained a considerable comfort, at times, a life line.
You brought me Chet, you were the best grandma, you understood the give and take of family. You never failed to remind me when I needed to wear a coat (even when I myself was a mother). You are special and dear to me. The strength of my/our convictions shall remain alive as long as I do. You were funny and sincere and kind in a way that raised those around you. Thank you for everything, Mom.