Today marks two years since my mom has passed away.
As a daughter, with the close bond that I had with my mother, losing her at a young age was one of the most difficult things I will endure in my lifetime. I understand that while I was a grown woman – she was there for my wedding day, she was here to meet her first grand baby – I didn’t rely on her like I would have had I lost her in my teens or 20s; but there are still a million questions about parenting, sustaining a healthy marriage, etc, that often make me yearn to have her here as my guide, my cheerleader, my friend. Losing her broke a part of my foundation; my identity, my confidence – everything changed after losing her.
I know my story is not unique. I know that I will have to go through many more heartbreaks, losses, challenges and obstacles – that’s a part of life. I just want to make sure that I’m living my best self. Not dwelling in the past, but also celebrating her and the life she lived – so that her legacy will live on, and my boys may still come to have a relationship with her, even if it’s not in the traditional sense.
My mother was the greatest example of giving my brother and me a relationship with our grandmother, her mom. My mother lost her mother at the same age that I was when I lost her – we were both 30, young mothers, and lost our mothers in the fight against breast cancer. It is heart-wrenching when I think that two of these strong women, who I admire and look to for inspiration, were robbed of a full life. They should both still be here on this earth by my side – two generations wiped out from cancer.
They say that your relationship with your deceased loved one continues long after they are gone, and I believe that to be true. I continue to learn things about her, even after she is gone. I never truly appreciated or understood what my mother felt until I went through that same tragedy. I remember her saying things like “Your grandmother would have been (insert age) today, it was her birthday”, or “I cannot believe that today your grandmother has been gone for (insert year) years now”. I remember feeling sad for my mother in those moments, but never truly grasping how difficult it must have been for her. Now, however, I am so grateful to her for setting that example; it is a gift that she has given me, a road map to navigate my own grief while simultaneously creating a bond for my sons to their nana.
Thank you Mom. I love you and I miss you.