The First Mother’s Day
It caught me off guard…I was grocery shopping and walked past the card display, and saw the sign, “Mother’s Day! May 10th”. My heart caught in my chest, and I felt the sting of tears as the reality hit me- this would be my first Mother’s Day without Heavy D. I thought I had cried all the tears I possibly could, but the echoes of grief will continue to wash over me at times like this. Since seeing that display, I now notice advertisements everywhere…I’m sure that I am extra sensitive to them, especially this year. I want to do something special to celebrate my mom’s memory on Sunday, something that would be meaningful to both of us, but I’m not sure yet what that will be. Much better to celebrate than to mourn…I have no doubt that Mom would want it that way.
Our last Mother’s Days were so fun. Dan and I took Mom to her favorite place for fried shrimp, The Fish Market. We sat outside to eat so that there was plenty of room for her walker, and she was the queen of the day. People at the restaurant seemed drawn to her, coming up to talk to her…and she loved every single drop of attention. She tried on a cute hat that one of her Space People had given to her and mugged for photos. The year before, my present to her was a collection of the stories I had written about her. Watching her face as she read them at the table was something I will never forget, as they really touched her. I always wished her both ‘Happy Mother’s Day’ and ‘Happy Father’s Day’, since she was really both parents to me, and she loved it.
So many memories come crashing back to me, the wonderful ones, and the painful ones from the end. I am not falling into the depths of despair- it is life, and life brings loss along with love and joy. I am just missing her keenly as the holiday that celebrates mother’s approaches. I have already planted several flowers in Mom’s memory in my special garden that we call ‘Secret Garden, but this first Mother’s Day without her calls for something more special. I feel such gratitude to have had Heavy D as my mother and my best friend. What a journey we shared in our fifty-one years together. She was my greatest teacher, living a life that was a beautiful example of kindness, friendship, true love….and laughter, always lots of laughter. I look forward to planning a day to remember.