Shortly before she died my mom said, “Our lives are a blip on the radar, Wendy. You will go on living as though I never existed.”
How can such a statement be so true and so false simultaneously?
Time has taught me:
Not to call her when I’m upset, or happy, or have a question to ask, or need advice, or want to visit her – just because, no longer do I have the opportunity to giggle incessantly with her, or fight about our differing political views, or expect to see her smiling face and bouncy personality on holidays.
But memories have taught me the opposite.
I expect her to answer the phone, because she always had, and I want to hear her voice as I did for most of my life, I remember giggling with her so clearly that it hurts my heart not to, and although someone else sits in her seat on holidays, no one will ever take her place.
My mother was a force to be reckoned with, how such a petite woman garnered the gravitational power she did is a mystery.
She wasn’t always fun, or easy. She would withdraw from me when angry, which I found frightening as a child and teenager. She had a lot of opinions, and she was stubborn as a goat when she grabbed on to something.
But then she was as loyal as they came, she showered me with a singular love, she was steadfastly there for my heartaches and successes, and she was smart, well read, and genuine. She had a big heart, was the best grandma (ask my kids), and sang with the angelic voice she inherited from my grandmother, and my daughter then inherited from her.
Mom was a no bullshit individual, but she was also a softie. She had friends for 70 years, was the glue that held our family, dispersed over many states, together, and was a devoted daughter.
I miss her every day, and that’s a privilege because that can only occur when the love you shared outweighs the loss you suffered.