As I stand here today, I can’t reconcile the fact that my Mom
has died against the woman I knew. She was a force to be
reckoned with, a force of Nature, and the quintessential
matriarch. I hurtled myself at her thousands of times yet
she stayed strong, unwavering. A mother. I didn’t realize
how much I would miss her until now when its too late.
The woman I saw on Monday evening was not the woman
I knew in this life. Her spirit was gone and we all knew
how much a woman she was.
She gave me many things in this life – helped me when I
needed, definitely more than she should have. She encour-
aged me to be a strong woman . . something that was an
inside job for me but not often an outside one. There was
no way I could fill her shoes – One sister is the mirror
of her and fit to walk in her shoes. My other sisters and I
were either more like my father or fierce individuals.
I was her antithesis.
But even in this I defined myself by her measure.
My sisters and aunt and I stood around her hospital
bed and solemnly swore we wouldn’t followed the
same health choices she did. We agreed we would be
closer to each other. Some of that has come true,
After she died, I moved to California to be close to my
children. I just didn’t realize they would not feel the same
My medical issues soon made a burden to my son. My daughter
was out of the country. Finally, I realized I had to go back to Con-
necticut to be where family could help me out when needed and
where I was wanted.
In the course of looking for a new apartment, I had the opportunity
to stay in my mom’s bedroom for two months. I saw her life and
the things that comprised it. My anger slowly dissipated, as I
could feel hers do and we made peace.
Our relationship had always been a tough one. A reason
I moved to California was to put as much distance between
us as possible or I didn’t think I would survive. She was a
remarkable, powerful woman and I had just been too
angry to see all the remarkable things about her.
I miss her, I have grown and I think she would be proud
of me now.