Monday, March 2, 2015

Something Else

Today is the 10th anniversary of the death of my grandmother.  I wrote about her loss in this post from last year.

I've been thinking quite a bit about what to write today.  Even though this is such a monumental anniversary in my life, my day was ordinary.

I cleaned my kitchen.
I went to Bed Bath & Beyond to buy cheap-but-okay-looking curtains that I can live with until our house sells.
I took my girls to the dentist.
I paid bills.
I will drive Abby to and from dance.
I will cook dinner.
I will read.

So, yeah.... a day just like any other day with this layer of SOMETHING ELSE underneath it.  I know this day will always be a hard one.  I lost my mom when I was 21.... I've now been without her longer than I had her, and the anniversary of her death still catches me off guard every summer.
My mom and her mom laughing at something in the mid- to late- seventies.

But I would not be who I am - as a mother or as a person - without these two women.  I learned how to be a parent, and sometimes how NOT to parent, through the examples they lived.  I can see the physical traits I've inherited:  my hands and eyes from my mom and the silvery gray hair that is starting to show through my dark brown from Gram.  But I also have elements of their personalities as well.

And my girls?  Though they never knew my mom and will not remember Gram, they are learning our family traditions and the stories that are passed along through me.  And these will in turn get passed along to their children.

And most of all I've learned that no one is guaranteed another day, so live well.  Never fail to hug those you love when you can.

And call your mother.

And your grandmother.


  1. What a fun picture of your mother and grandmother laughing. Your mother looks somewhat like my mother...who died five years ago at the age of 90. I was lucky to have her for so long. You are right that the stories you pass to your daughters will carry on the memories. That is what I try to do through my blog...hoping that my mother's stories will carry on. Thanks so much for your memories today. It touched my heart. Jackie

  2. We need to hold onto those stories and special memories. I lost my mom when I was in my twenties too. She never saw my children, but somehow she still helped guide them. Time is precious, we need to spend it wisely and embrace those we love as often as we can.

  3. What a great picture and tribute to your mother and grandmother. Your memory brought me to the moment when I was thirteen and my own grandmother died. I love that you are passing down the family stories and keeping the traditions alive for your daughters. Sending a hug and peaceful thoughts to you today, friend.

  4. I remember your slice from last year very well. You have encapsulated the feelings and emotions you're going through so clearly. When you said you've now been without your mom for longer than you had her is so halting. Bless you and your family on this difficult anniversary.

  5. These memories are so special and remind us of how precious life is and how quickly it will pass. Prayers & hugs to you on this special anniversary.

  6. What a powerful testament to how amazing these two women were! We should all hope to leave such an imprint on the lives around us. Thinking of you today, friend, and sending lots of hugs your way.

  7. I understand. I lost my mom two years ago. It was shortly after reaching a teaching milestone - so every time I think about that, I think about her. I think about her when I'm happy, when I'm sad, and sometimes just out of nowhere, I wish I could say hi one more time. Give her one more hug. I try to be as enthusiastic and joyful and emotionally available as I can to my daughter and the students I get to work with. You are right - we must live well. Raising a glass to you.

  8. What a wonderful way to honor the women in your life! Hugs to you and your family!

  9. I appreciated that your day was ordinary in so many ways, but so not-ordinary in a big way. We just never know what people we pass by in stores are dealing with or thinking about.

    I can tell your grandmother meant a lot to you. Her memory does continue to live on through you and your stories.