June 9. Last year at this time, we were waiting for what we didn't want. But what was coming. And on June 17th, we said our final good-byes on this earth to mom.
It has been a year. Some days I long to pick up the phone, to share my day. Last week as I adventured in the US capital, and roamed the beautiful neighbourhood my son and wife life in, I thought of how much mom would love it... she loved adventure. How I wanted to call her and tell her all about it. She always wanted to know when we arrived safely and was the first person I'd call when I got home... and then share all the news.
Hey mom, I saw my first cardinal!! I saw several in fact, I was so excited. Beautiful, red, fleeting, and a beautiful song. You would have loved it...
And the beautiful rhododendrons and azaleas, many still in bloom. Mom, who grew beautiful gardens everywhere, was a little sad that these varieties didn't grown well in the Okanagan sun. They were some of her favourites, and she would have enjoyed them greatly.
But even more than nature, which mom loved, and adventure, where she thrived, she loved family, and I can hear her encouraging me on... me who doesn't love adventure so much, well, at least flying, but when there is a little grandson beckoning.... well, you just get on that plane and go! And the time was precious... the baby kisses, the giggles, the chasing of a toddler who has found his feet and wants to go places... And the moments pruning bushes with my son. Well, he did the pruning, and I held the bag, thinking of how mom would have given advice... she was so good at that.
I had good times sharing walks and good conversations. And it was wonderful to exchange ideas and recipes and enjoy the good food my daughter-in-law created, and just to spend good moments together...
Coming back to home, everything is exploding in the garden as it does in June. Most challenging, my rose garden, where mom gave me advice year after year, recipes to exterminate the aphids, advice on pruning, just admiring the beautiful blooms with me. Last year she received my first blooms, as she spent time in hospice.
I have a new problem, this year, mom, and I need your advice. A new bug, foreign to me, invading our beautiful roses. Help!!
Does one ever get over the loss of a mother? I've heard not. I think of my much younger friends, way too young to lose their mothers, and how I am sad for them. It is another tearing of the umbilical cord, a splitting from a relationship that has many strands. And even in that separating, that painful loss, we are still connected, and always will be...
Today I spent time with a woman who was longing for heaven. Her body tired, her voice weak, but filled with longing at what is to come. It was beautiful. As flowers fade, and seasons pass, life is fleeting. And the beauty of today is a foretaste of joy in heaven's tomorrow... where there will be no more sorrow, no bugs in the roses, no fear of flying, and no more separation. A balm for a grieving heart.