It’s over a year ago since I poured my heart out here about losing my mother to cancer the week after I became a mother for the first time myself. The original post can be found here. At that time I was merely putting one foot in front of the other and I wasn’t in a comfortable place. I couldn’t speak about her without crying, think about her without it taking my breath away or stop feeling envious of those around me that still had their parents.
It’s now been two years and six months since my mother passed away. Life has moved on. I miss her every single day. I think about her all the time. But it no longer consumes me like it did at that time. Putting one foot in front of the other means that slowly but surely you come back to yourself. Don’t get me wrong, life will never be the same again. But I’m more myself again. Losing a parent isn’t easy but it’s the natural course of life. It’s far more unnatural to bury a child. Thankfully I have never had to do that but people close to me have and it’s horrific. The immense pain and grief that goes along with that is so traumatic and just not what any parent should have to experience. I’m now at a point in my life where I have accepted that burying a parent is part of the course. A hard part but a natural part all the same
I learned a lot from my mother. I watched her as she courageously fought a horrible disease and I seen the grace and dignity in which she dealt with it and her fate. I listened to hundreds of people who attended her wake and funeral and spoke about the lady that she was. The amazing qualities that she held were reiterated by her home care hospice nurse who knew Mammy from a few years back when Mammy helped to take care of a neighbour who was dying. No one asked her to do this but she was a wonderful, caring and giving person who left a lasting impression on people who came into her contact. I cherish these traits, the letters and cards that people wrote to us after her death and the wonderful things that people said. She was a lady. She was kind. She was strong and loving and fussed like a typical Irish mammy to no end. I can now think about these things without
breaking down and remember her fondly.
One of the things I lamented about her passing was not having her around when I had just become a mother. When I felt I needed her advice, reassurance and help the most. I know now that she had spent 28 years imparting everything
I needed to know already. She raised seven daughters and nothing was any problem to her. I’ve had the best role model that
I could have asked for and while I will miss her every day for a long time I will now in future smile when I think of the little things that she did that I now do for my son. She taught me to have compassion and to look after those around you. I will continue to do my best to remember that and hopefully I can pass on the same to Michael .
I guess what I’m trying to say is that when we lose someone that we love we don’t ever really get over it. We just get to a stage of acceptance where we can hopefully love everything about the time that we had with them and let our tears and anger go. There will always be a gap in our lives but because she’s not there I’ve spent more time with my dad and now I love and appreciate him even more for the gentleman that he is. I’ll cherish every minute that I have with him as we know that we don’t know what the future holds. Every day with your health is a blessing. This experience has taught me that. And for that I’m grateful.
If you still have your parents hug them and tell them you’re thankful for everything they have done. The sacrifices that every parent makes for their children aren’t always acknowledged but wouldn’t it be nice to say you did thank them when you still could? Appreciate everything they have done. Listen to their stories. Learn from their advice. You’ll miss is some day.