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Missing Mom April 15, 2009

Posted by hopeauthority in Children, Family, Parenting.
Tags: , ,

“There’s only two things that are certain in this life: death and taxes.”

That was one of my mom’s favorite sayings… probably since she was born on income tax day and she worked for over 25 years as the secretary/office manager in a funeral home, comforting people in their time of need.

She’s been gone for 15 years and today is her birthday.  I was her only child. She died during the “infertility years”, well before my kids were born.

She was an amazing woman. She was always dressed up in silk Liz Claiborne dresses, with high heels and the real expensive stockings you get in a department store …instead of plastic egg. She had beautiful skin and never went out without makeup. She had her hair done at the salon…called “the hairdresser” back then… each Saturday. She never owned a pair of pants or socks or sneakers. And I can actually feel her presence whenever I’m near an Estee Lauder counter or the fragrance “Beautiful”.

Yet, for all her fashion sense and style, she was also down to earth and real in many ways. She never lost her small town Pennsylvania roots. She loved kids, even though she only wanted to have one of her own. You might catch her sitting on the floor of her office in her fancy clothes playing with her boss’ young son. When my cousin was sick (we’re talking about 30 years ago here), she actually convinced a local pizza place to not only deliver her a pizza, but to drive over to Friendly’s first and pick up ice cream too! She did tons of charity work, would make people laugh til they peed in their pants, threw awesome parties, and was just a unique and special woman.

And there was nothing…nothing…that she wouldn’t do for me.

Since she died before I became a mother myself, I realize that as much as I loved and appreciated her…and she knew that… I really didn’t fully appreciate the true depth of her love for me until my own kids were born, and it was too late to tell her.

I can’t imagine what my life would be like right now if she was still alive. But I know it’d be much happier and fuller and easier, that’s for sure. And I like to think of her as guiding my family somehow from beyond.

Funeral talk was always part of the family vocabulary.  Being in the business, she had chosen a lovely old cemetery on the hill for herself. So I chose a spot under the tallest pine tree on the tallest hill…since she despised the sun. The graves next to hers are from the Revolutionary War era, with weathered and worn red stone markers. Sitting there really makes me think about how people have gathered on that very same patch of grass for over 200 years. And how they’ll be doing so for hundreds more.

I wanted her headstone to give future generations of visitors a glimpse of the wonderful woman who rests there. So, I waited for inspiration before having her headstone inscribed as follows:

A Heart of Gold Describes Your Soul.

A Page from Vogue, Your Face.

Part Small-Town Pennsylvania Girl,

Part Sequins, Silk, and Grace.

Devoted Friend to Many.

Beloved Mother Beyond Compare.

Heaven Must Surely be Beautiful,

If Only Because You Are There.

 Happy Birthday in Heaven, Ma.  Love you and miss you every day.



1. Chun Wong - April 16, 2009

That’s such a beautiful post and a lovely poem for her headstone which really describes her and your feelings towards her.

2. pixiemama - April 17, 2009

A beautiful post.
I’m sorry about your mama. I’ll give mine an extra squeeze for you.


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