A farewell for now

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I now belong to an “elite club,” as my cousin Carolyn Jo put it. My mom passed away May 4, and I now belong to that “elite club” of having lost both of my parents. As I said when my dad died nearly 9 years ago, you might think you have prepared yourself for that phone call, but when you get that call, you realize that you can’t ever be emotionally prepared. I say that as someone who does not like emotional pain, and whose default response to a negative emotion is to shut down. This becomes particularly true for someone like me who gets that call while I am out with a friend. Despite the fact that my therapist told me (as I melted down multiple times on her in one session) that it is okay to cry in front of Petra.

But I almost cried in front of Petra as she witnessed that phone call I got from Sharon.

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It’s been a whole month now. There is still a lot of emotion. No matter how certain I am of the eternal resting place of her soul, I still miss her. Much. With the Alzheimer’s and it’s associated dementia, I’ve been losing her for a few years. I am grateful that those years were few. When my Aunt Florabel started losing her memory, I remember Mom telling me that she was afraid that would happen to her. And then it did. She never completely lost her memory, and she never lost her core kind and humorous personality. She didn’t suffer from pain, and she considered the complications from the COPD (recurring pneumonia) a mere annoyance.

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There’s a story behind this next picture. One year just before Christmas, Mom asked me more than once if I had gotten a Christmas card from Carolyn Jo. I thought it odd that she asked me more than once, but didn’t dwell on it. Then I got the card, and died laughing! A couple months prior my cousin Jill (Carolyn’s daughter) had gotten married. Mom got picked on over all the beer (which she didn’t partake of because she didn’t drink), and someone made the remark to her that she couldn’t even bring herself to pick up a bottle. So, Mom being Mom, showed them, and picked up and empty bottle and posed. Carolyn took the photo and made Christmas cards. Of course, Mom about died, but the entire rest of the family LOVED it! I framed mine, and Mom gave me the stink eye over it.

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Not a day goes by that I don’t miss her. Her wisdom, her laughter, and her love. It’s farewell for now, but I know one day I will see her again.

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17 Responses to 'A farewell for now'

  1. Petra says:

    Love the photos, and the Christmas card story (lol)! I have told you that you can cry in front of me. I even gave you an awkward hug without even using a broom, dammit! ;)
    Seriously though, I’m sorry you are in that “club”… there really is no prpearing for losing a family member. <3

    • DragonLady says:

      Yes, I know I can, just like you can in front of me. But we both know if I had let it go, I probably wouldn’t have stopped, and ain’t nobody got time for that. But, hey, come around me today. I seem to have no trouble letting the tears flow today. ;)

      But seriously, <3

  2. Stacey says:

    This was beautiful, Martha! And the Christmas card story is hilarious!! Remember we love you!!

  3. Stacey says:

    This is beautiful, Martha! And I totally agree with Petra… The Christmas card story is hilarious!

    • DragonLady says:

      And you know, for some reason, I don’t have such a problem melting down in front of you. Which puts you in an elite group within my inner circle. :) :hugs: <3

  4. Karyn says:

    What a great tribute. So sorry for your loss but so grateful that you will see her again and NEVER lose her. I too loved the Christmas card story. Gave me a little glimpse of humor!!

  5. John MacDonald says:

    Nice post. It’s the good memories I have of my mom too. Love the Christmas card too. She seemed to have a good sense of humor.

    Might be an Elite member myself soon as Dad has been told that he has Pulmonary Fibrosis. Losing my Mom last January and now this.
    :(

    I wish I had some photos of Mom when she was younger like you have. That one though looks like it’s been through the ringer.

    Nothing wrong with having a little cry. There are moments that I’ll be doing something and it would remind me of Mom and I’d start to tear up a little and start missing her big time.
    You’d have to be a really cold hearted person not to.
    Take care Martha.

    • DragonLady says:

      I am so sorry, John. It is so tough. My cousin Carolyn lost both her parents within a month of each other. Broke my heart for her. :(

      I don’t have many from before she married my dad. Just like I have very few of him before they married. And yeah, that one is just a tiny piece of the original. Gosh, that reminds me! There is a picture of her in her purse from when she was 5 right after Uncle Fred and Aunt Pearl were born.

      I’ve had several today. Flat out melted down going up to Lowes today, but then I ran into stupid people (almost literally) in the roundabout and the tears turned into laying on my horn and saying a lot of bad words.

      Thank you, John. <3

  6. Ron White says:

    The pain and tears will finally fade, but the longing for their presence never leaves.

    God bless you Martha.

  7. Angelique says:

    Our parents guide us through life and when the leave is no matter if it’s planned or not it hurts. Martha you have ALWAYS been bullet proof and it’s OK to cry she was the best and she was your mom. Your mom was your Northstar when you are lost, mad or frustrated just look to heaven and know she will guide you (and maybe even laugh at or with you). Love you always my friend! Petra keep her straight for me please

  8. Teeni says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. I can see you in your mom’s pictures and I can tell what a great person she was. I even see her in your children. I do love the Christmas card photo and story behind it too. I pray that you have strength when you need it and that that strength allows you to “lose it” when you need to and that you are surrounded by love always.

  9. Rose says:

    She have the same birth date with me, June 20th. May her soul rest in peace and may the good Lord bless you and your family abundantly. Cheers from the land of Borneo.