Sunday, January 16, 2011

The world is a better place ...



They married on December 19th 1953 ... he died on June 29th 1968 ... and she died this past week ... and the world is a better place for their presence, and for their legacy, and I don't say it because I am part of that legacy, I say it because this past week we've had time and cause to review that legacy and see the many small ways in which they touched the lives of others ...


Mom wasn't famous, rich or powerful ... but she had a deep and unflinching love for her family and for her friends ... she could be grumpy and get ticked off with you, but deep down inside, she remained loyal and caring, and she would never leave you in the lurch ...


There are so many memories that have flooded back this past week as we've made our preparations, sorted through pictures and looked through the accumulated clutter and memories that fill the house she and dad moved into in 1960, and we've called home ever since ... there are dozens of pictures of cakes and birthday parties over the years ... I remember a time when almost ALL the girls in our extended family asked for a "Doll Cake" for their birthdays, and mom would carefully create a one of a kind work of art: a barbie-type doll in the middle of an angel food panned cake, iced to resemble a long flowing dress, and some of them came with umbrellas, or hats to match !! ... there are pictures of her with my brother and I as kids, pictures of her with nieces and nephews, pictures of her with her grandkids ... over and over there are pictures of Mom holding a wee one on her shoulder and nestled safely into her neck ... to say Mom loved kids is an understatement !!


Then there are the notes and clippings and pictures that mom has tucked away ... over and over she would take note of something and want to pass it on to someone ... letter from her seldom arrived with only a letter ... clippings, newspaper announcements, obits, and other odds and ends tumbled out of the envelope as Mom tried to share things with family and friends both near and far ...


The last few years haven't been easy for Mom ... her health has been challenging at times, and her mobility had become limited ... but she plugged away day after day, week after week, but every step along the way was dogged by a loneliness and a sadness ... she missed Dad ... and in the last few years she took the loss of her own Mom and her elder brother hard ... Mom could see her own mortality sneaking up on her, and she began to look backwards through stories and memories more than she looked forward.


I feel blessed to have been able to be closer to home these last few months ... getting to see Mom once or twice a week, after too many years away let me see what heavy lifting by Brother has been doing, and allowed me to spend some important time with Mom - time that has proven to be precious beyond words with recent events ... On Monday I spent much of the afternoon with my brother, then spent the evening with Mom before coming home to Flesherton ... we chatted about many things - nothing earth shattering, just the usual familial banter ... I am relieved and happy that I left that night telling mom that I loved her ... I don't feel guilty that it was left unsaid. And I am relieve that her struggles and sufferings are over ... we WILL miss her, but for the first time in many years she is at peace.


I was once told by a First Nations person that when we die, we enter the Spirit world - a place that is as far away as your next breath, and as close as the wind on your cheek ... The Spirit World is all around us, but we've lost the ability to see it or feel it ... However, in those moments after we've lost someone dear to us, when we think to ourselves "oh I should ask them ..." or "Oh, I should give them a call ..." the veil between the Spirit World and our world has thinned and we are not only thinking of them, we are seeing and feeling them.


In the last week I've thought a dozen times - "Oh, I should ask Mom about this ..." Only to realize I can't ... yet, in that moment, I know she is there somewhere very near, perhaps shaking her head or rolling her eyes, but no doubt there ...


I miss you Mom, but I know that you are once again with Dad, and ALL is right with your world for the first time in a long time ... Don't worry mom, Scott and I will be okay. We'll be there for each other, and we'll look after Noahkila, Ms H. and Beetle ... thankfully though, they have a couple of wonderful and loving guardian angels to help us along the way !!!


I love you Mom ...

3 comments:

wendy said...

oh shawn!
this is beautiful! i am crying. you are in my deep prayers.

Candygirlflies said...

Indeed.

xo CGF

wish i could be there tomorrow... know i'll be thinking of you and yours.

Bonnie said...

Sorry for your loss, Sean. And your kids' loss, as well. Mom's are loved and missed every day.