Mom’s 8th Year Death Anniversary

Written by Jenn

I’m contemplating my mother today on her death anniversary.

Mom passed away 18 months after my father did, at the age of 50 (my father was 49 when he died). Her hospitalization and death has been one of the most stressful times in my life. The three years surrounding that has been an aching blur of memories.

It’s hard not to tear up when I think of Mom. Words cannot express how much she means to me. She taught me so much by her witness of unconditional love, and her beautiful example of enduring strength in suffering. Her faith in God was unshakeable, and her sense of hope undiminishing.

It pains me to know that my children don’t have her in their lives. They’re unaware of what they’re missing. I grieve for the future we’ll never have together.

I miss her.

And today, more than ever, I miss my siblings. I suspect they’ll visit Mom’s grave today, bring her a small pot of flowers, and perhaps a small Tim Horton’s double-double, her favourite.

I learned from grief counselling that there’s a body memory for loss. I can’t remember the fine details of the countless hours spent in the hospital,  all the funeral preparations, and what we did with her things eight years ago…..But my body remembers.

This time of year is usually a low point for me. I feel my energies dip. I’m more sluggish and tired than usual and want to sleep all the time. Mentally, I have no desire to think of anything. I escape with my mind by reading fiction and watching movies. Emotionally, I’m sensitive, impatient, easily discouraged, and prone to tears.

This ebb-tide of grief still surprises me. No matter how hard I run towards joy, loss nips at my heels. Such is the human condition, when loved ones who hold the promise of the future pass on before us.

.Good Gifts by Melanie Doane

Good Gifts of Love

Good Gifts you hand me down

From your first touch

To my wedding gown

Do you even know what you have given me?

Do you even see that you are wisdom, you are wisdom to me?

My song, my soul

You gave so easily

I’ll not forget these gifts to me

We say good-bye but we are not alone

Here with me still, my heart my home


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14 Responses to Mom’s 8th Year Death Anniversary

  1. Nicole Lampa says:

    Dearest Jen,
    God has an amazing way of making us think of good people. I swear I thought of your mom the other night. I made chicken and rice for Julian (his favourite), and I thought of your mom and how she made the most amazing fried rice. Then my thoughts continued to how my mom spent some time with your mom while we were in junior high. My mom always talked very highly of the Nicolas family has great respect for your parents.
    My thoughts and prayers are with you my dear and long-time friend:).

    • I was so touched by this Nic. Thank you! I take for granted that only my siblings and I remember my parents….so it’s nice to hear other people’s memories of them. Helps me remember too, when the majority of my memories of them was when they were very sick. I LOVE your mom. I think she is one of the most considerate and generous moms I’ve met. You are so very blessed to have her in your life….We all are! Please send her my love.
      Hugs to you and your boys.

  2. Nancy from Massachusetts says:

    Jenn, so sorry about the loss of your Mom and Dad. (my Dad passed away at 60, when I was 18). It always hurts to lose a parent but remember, your children will know their grandparents…through your eyes and the stories they hear.

    i only knew one grandparent growing up, but know many stories about all of them. My son knows quite a bit about my father – and has even given a report about his experience with the french resistance during WWII.

    …I don’t know that I would go to a cemetary at 11pm! Your sister is very brave!! 🙂

    • Thank you Nancy. That is so true – “your children will know their grandparents…through your eyes and the stories they hear.” How come I never saw it that way? I will make more of an effort to share stories about my parents with them. Perhaps remembering hurt, so I tried not to think too much about them, as I mostly remember their very ill moments….but there are memories there…

      What a legacy for your son to know your father’s story…so important to pass that down to generations to come.

      And yes, my sis is brave…..I wonder why they went so late? lol
      🙂 Jenn

      • Ren says:

        I was hoping to see Mom!!! Hahaha. Just joking! We had a busy day and it was so cold so we went without the kids at a later time when we could! Hahaha.

        I know it sounds weird but I’m not scared at all. That cemetery is very peaceful and beautiful! I don’t feel scared at all!!! I actually like going at night. Hehehe I am weird!!!

      • You’re hilarious Ren! :=)

  3. I’m so sorry for your loss, Jenn. This is a beautiful piece and lovely tribute to your mom, who sounds like an amazing lady. My mom died young as well, but I was a child then, so I don’t have the memories that you do. You’re fortunate to have had some time with her.

    With or without memories, the sense of loss never goes away, does it.

  4. Renee says:

    Hi My lovely and amazing sister!

    I wish I was there to throw my arms around you, hug you, cry, and then watch movies to help each other escape! LOL…I did visit her tonight (Reggie was too chicken to come with me to the cemetery as it was 11pm) and I brought her a double double. Too bad he didnt come cuz I would have scared the crap out of him! HAHAHA…(last time we went and it was dark, I kept saying “OH MY GOSH WHAT IS THAT???? And he said in a calm but shaky voice “Ren, you don’t know how freakin scared I am right now…” I burst out laughing!!!!!)

    Love you lots. And never forget how amazing and strong you are!

  5. Mamak says:

    I am sorry. I hope that when this happens to me I can deal with it as eloquently as you. Peace to you.

  6. McLeod Family says:

    We will add your Mom and Dad and family in our families’ prayers. Big hugs.

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