Something to hold on to...

"Today I am one day nearer home than ever before. One day nearer the dawning when the fog will lift, mysteries clear, and all question marks straighten up into exclamation points!
 I shall see the King!"     Vance Havner

Saturday, March 3, 2007

March 3rd

I do not like this day. I never will. It is odd that an event, which happened 29 years ago, would shape my life forever. I have often said that I do not want to be defined by the events of my life, but rather by my reaction to them. I am not so sure that my reaction to this event has yet been finalized. I am still reacting to it. But does this event “define” me? I never wanted it to, but in some ways I guess it does. I changed forever that day.

29 years ago today my mother died. Most people step around that word, calling it passing, left, departed, lost, even expired. I just say it like it is. She died. The word and everything about it is ugly. I know it has to happen, and that it’s the way God created us, but it still stinks.

I was 21 years old. Five weeks until my wedding day. Five weeks to adjust from the saddest most hurtful day of my life to the most wonderful day. I still miss her. I miss our times together, but mostly now, I miss what we did not have, and what we will never have. I have lived more without her than I did with her, and my entire married life has held this huge void. Not once could I call my mother for a recipe, household tip, or parenting advice. Never did she hold, kiss, or baby-sit my boys. She never visited my home, commented on my decorating, or helped me pick out curtains and wallpaper. Yes, I miss my mother, but I miss the idea of a mother just as much.

To be fair, I must tell you that God stepped in to help with that void, as two incredible people became valuable mentors in my journey to womanhood, and without them I cannot tell you what I would have done.

One is my sister. I leaned on her hard in those early days. We both hurt so badly and in many ways wanted each other to fill the void that we felt. I tried to turn her into a surrogate mother, and looked to her for all types of advice and assistance. I just did not realize that being “my mother” was not really a role she desired at that time, she was grieving too hard. She needed to be just my sister, and I was grieving too hard to notice. Over the years though, our relationship as sisters is stronger than ever, and our now our roles are clear.

My other anchor became my mother-in-law. I know, it does not fit with conventional wisdom, that I would have an incredible relationship with my husband’s mother. On the day of my mother’s funeral, my soon to be mother-in-law whispered in my ear that she did not want to replace my mother, but that she would “be there if I needed her”. She did not know what she getting herself into…I have never stopped needing her!

There are few bonds stronger than that of a mother and child. That this bond would be so strong this far from the grave is a mystery to me. Will I still ache on this day 29 years from now? Will I still grieve and have pity parties when I think about the times we never had? I guess time will tell.

In the past, I have tried to use this day to celebrate her, rather than grieve. I have worn my mother’s favorite color: pink. I have gone to visit my sister and aunt and we all wore pink. I do not know yet what all this day will bring. I will try to focus on the best parts of the time I had with her, but yet realistically, I will be sad as well.

If you have a living mother, take a moment for me, and think of her. Think of the ways she has enriched your life. Think of the things you take for granted, and cherish them now. And while you are thinking, think of me please, just on this day. I still hate it.


Grace said...

Oh Silver Belle, tears are falling down my cheeks. You will be in my heart as you go thru this day friend.

Farm Wife said...

I'm praying for you today.

Queen Mother said...

I'm just as sad for you today as then.

Inkling said...

I'm missing you Aunt A. I didn't know today was the day, but know how much you loved your mother and daddy. God put you in our lives, and we are so grateful. You've been an example to me in so many ways.

And one thing I will never, ever forget is this.....when my heart was breaking over that broken engagement (for the second time), you held me in your arms and told me, "This does not define you. This is not who you are or who you will be." Those words resonated through me during all those days of grieving and loss, and they stay inside my heart now. Hearing them causes me to want to choose the moments I want to define me, and not to be a "victim of circumstances".

Oh, Aunt A, I love you so much. Wear pink today and know that your mother would be pleased with the woman you've become.

love, the redhead

Anonymous said...

Oh Silver Belle, your beautiful words touched my heart, and caused that lump to rise up in my throat. You're family is so blessed to have you.