Tuesday, November 10, 2009

In Loving Memory Of My Mother

Time passes. Even when it seems impossible. Even when each tick of the second hand aches like the pulse of blood behind a bruise. It passes unevenly in strange lurches and dragging lulls, but pass it does.Even for me.
-Stephanie Meyer

The world doesn't stop spinning because you lost someone you love. Life goes on. Days will pass. And eventually there will be a time when you will struggle to remember what life was like when they were still around.

It has been 11 months since my mother, Theresa Anne Nadler passed away and today would have been her 46 birthday. I wanted to take this opportunity to write something nice for her, but when I put the pen to paper, the direction changed and the content of this page is what I was left with. It's a little jumpy and incoherent at times, so please forgive me; vulnerable is not really my thing. So, a cheery, birthday tribute it is not. Maybe in a few years I will have gotten use to the fact that this is how life is going to be and I'll smile instead of cry when I think of her. Tonight my sister's and I are going to get together and celebrate my mother's life. We will have good food and plenty of tearful conversations about what it was like when mom was with us. Most importantly, there will be cake. Dead or alive, it's not a birthday unless there is cake and mom deserves a happy one no matter where she is...

In the almost year that my mother's been gone, I have thought long and hard about our relationship. It wasn't a perfect one. There were times when I was more her parent than she was mine, but I loved her more than words can express and I've managed to make peace with the fact that she did the best she could with what she had. Good or bad, I'm thankful to have had her as my mother.

Like anyone grieving, I sometimes ask myself if I told her I loved her often enough, if I visited as much as I should, and if I told her how important she was to me. I'm not sure what the answer is. I can only hope that I was able to give her enough of those things while I had the chance. It's too late now to beat myself up over it.

My mother's death was sudden. Not that it would have mattered if I had time to prepare for it. I still would have been shocked, even if I knew it was going to happen. I think it's because my mind plays crazy tricks. It convinced me that my parents were invincible. It fooled me into believing that there would always be more time and that my parents would live forever. Unfortunately, it was all a cruel lie. The truth is that for everyone, there comes a day when the deals we make with god must be repaid. And God doesn't care what you leave behind or the manner in which you cash in. He doesn't care that you were somebody's mother or daughter or friend. You just go blindly to fulfill your obligation, while those that love you struggle to pick up the pieces and move forward with the rest of the living. I struggle every day. It has broken me.

As much as I believe that things happen for a reason; I am still very angry with God. Not only did he take my mother, but he damned me with a mind that will eventually fail me. One day all my memories of my mom will start to fall away like sand through a sieve. A sieve that will allow me to forget the exact shade of green her eyes were and how small she felt in my arms when we hugged. It will allow me to lose the tone of her voice and what her house smelled like on Christmas morning. After less than a year, I'm already starting to feel some of that slipping. The scariest part of it for me, is knowing that there will be a time in the future, where I stare at pictures and question if the memories that flood my mind are real or manifested from the photographs.

Day by day life moves forward. New routines are set and new traditions are forming. It's sad how normal living without my mother is becoming. I am starting to have days when I don't think of her at all. Sometimes two days will pass before I realize there hasn't been a glimmer of her in my mind. I feel so guilty for that and as unfortunate as it is, I know that as days turn to months, and months to years, I will think of her less; there's just no way to stop it. Like God, time can be so unfair.

I hold on to the hope that things will get better the longer she is gone, but for now I miss her terribly. With every day that passes there comes more occasions to remind me that I'm motherless. They are unavoidable and heartbreaking. They leave me painfully longing for her; praying that she'll exist again even for a second. Sometimes I get lucky and I dream of her. But it seems my eyes open too soon and I'm just left wanting her more.

Sometimes it's difficult to be happy because I feel like I'm doing her a disservice by enjoying life while she's not around. My mother would have gone crazy if she heard me say that. More than anything she wanted her kids to be happy. That is why the hardest part of losing my mom is not the fact that I cry for her when I'm sick or that I forget she's gone and try to call her when I'm lonely. The hardest part for me, is looking into the eye's of my younger sisters when they need her most; knowing that though I may try with all my might, I will never be able to fill my mother's shoes. That void will always be there. All I can do is try to make the transition less painful by doing things for them the way my mother did. My mom would have wanted that and I think the girls appreciate the effort.

I miss my mother more than I ever thought was possible. For 25 years she was my best friend and a really great mom. I hope that where ever she is, she's having everything she dreamed of on her birthday. Oh, and cake... Lots and lots of cake.

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