This grouping is my mom holding my first born, E. (now 16 years old-where do the years get to?). The first photo in the top left is in the hospital the first time she held her!
I was privileged to honor my mom each year on Mother's Day until I was in my early 30's....I am so glad she was able to see me celebrate Mother's Day as a mom myself for 3 years before she died in 1995.
Time slips by much too quickly. She was so very sick for so many years though she fought hard every step of the way. She did not live to see my second baby. She would have loved my 3 children, just as she loved each and every one of her grand and great grand kids.
She was wearing her wig in these pictures- she had some hair growing back after being bald(for the second time. ..there would also be a third time) but preferred to wear the wig to leave the house (or for photos). From the time E. began to talk in sentences she was always very precocious and I will never forget the day she first said, "Bye-bye car?" (which translates to ARE WE GOING BYE BYE?)and pointed as her Grammy was putting on the wig. Even when really sick, my Mom always put on her lipstick and perfume whenever she went out- even a quick trip to the grocery store.
When my mom was bedridden in her last days and I was 5 months pregnant with my A., we were fortunate to have wonderful help at our house from Hospice because I was told to be extra cautious since my previous pregnancy was a miscarriage. They would help me to bathe mom. I knew how much she loved her lipstick and perfume so we made sure to spritz some perfume on her after washing her. My mom's cancer was then spread to her brain and she was acting and saying things not quite on spot. She told me one day in a whisper at her bedside, "Watch that woman, I'm sure she is stealing my perfume. Can't you smell it?" She did not realize she was smelling it on herself! We skipped the lipstick at that point.
All summer long, I had a different bouquet of fresh flowers from the garden on her dresser each day for her to enjoy. I told her my heart was telling me that rather than me fussing over a grave site in the future, we should see and smell beautiful flowers -right now, while we are still together. She understood. In her more lucid moments we talked frankly about her dying and death.
Even now, on Mother's Day and on her birthday I work in the flowers gardens at home instead of fussing over a grave site. They are her flower gardens since I live in the inherited house in which I grew up. I feel closest to her among the perennial flowers that she planted. I feel great joy tending the garden for future generations and future Mother's Days and allowing happy memories of mom to flood my mind among the bright colors and fragrances...sweet as her perfume!
Today I am able to celebrate Mother's Day with my children because my mother chose to be a mother.
Think about it.