Thursday, October 3, 2013

for Mom/from Mom

My mother died a couple weeks ago after battling lung cancer for several months. I can honestly say I believe she was ready to be done with her mortal coil. Dad passed away five years ago, and Mom missed him so very much. In the end, the confident knowledge the two of them would be reunited in Heaven enabled her to slip peacefully away.

Mom was a strong confident woman. She approached life with a head-on, can-do, no-nonsense attitude and expected everyone else to do the same. As a general rule she was pretty visibly disappointed when/if they didn’t.

Mom had very clear ideas about personal responsibility and behavior. Lessons from Mom were absorbed by her four daughters in ways that worked best for each of us. How my mother ever managed to raise the four such very different personalities that my sisters and I represent is nothing short of miraculous. Some of us had to be more of a challenge for her than others, but Mom was adept at giving us the space to be just who we were and still give us the grounding and sensibilities in her eyes we needed to have.

Mom never accepted “I can’t” as reason for not doing something. Each of us jolly well could and she made damn sure we knew it every second of every day.

My mom’s legacy is a fascinating conglomeration.

When I stand out in my garden surrounded by vegetables, flowers, weeds and all manner of growing things I can easily say . . . this is my legacy from Mom. I can remember when we were young every spring when it came time to start planting, she would have us each select three or four different vegetables which would be “ours” that year to nurture all the way from seed to jar. In this manner we learned how to plant, grow, harvest and process all different sorts of fruits and vegetables. Thank you, Mom.

Then, when I sit down in my craft room, I thank the mother who raised me and taught me how to do all these amazing things. Thanks to Mom:
    I can follow a pattern to make clothing and adjust said pattern to fit.
    I design my own fabric creations and bring them to fruition.
    I take quilts from the design stage all the way to completion/ready to go on a bed.
    I do everything from sewing a simple seam to many more complicated techniques and I know how to use a seam ripper.
    I am capable of both hand embroidery and crochet. (Sorry, Mom, I never could embrace knitting the way you did.)
These are just a small taste of the many, many things our mother taught all four of us girls.

During the course of an average day I can stop myself dozens of times and say: “Thanks Mom.” Thanks for showing me how to do this or that and sometimes even for just making me believe I could even if I didn’t know how. More than anything else, Mom believed in imagination. She believed: If you could imagine it, you could do it.

I think that’s it really.

Mom’s legacy is my inherent belief in myself. The belief that I am capable of tackling just about any project, thought or idea and figuring out a way to bring it to fruition.

Thanks Mom.

1 comment:

Maggie said...

What a truly special lady. Let me add my own "thanks" to yours, because she and your dad gave us you.