Sunday, May 10, 2009


The last few days have been very hard. This is the first Mother's Day without my mom. Some people have said, "Well, at least you know she's in a good place, free from pain." Others have said, "Don't be sad on Mother's Day. Think of YOUR children, because you are their mother."

Both statements are valid, but did not bring comfort. I miss my mom. I know she is in a better place, I know I'm darn lucky to have such great girls, but I can't help missing Mom.

I didn't get offended by the people who made those comments, I know they don't know what to say. But their comments made me feel guilty for missing her. I can't help it, I just do.

Tonight I was telling Rick's friend that Mother's Day would be a hard day, because I missed Mom so much. He said, "What do you miss most about her?" He didn't make me feel guilty. He lost his dad ten years ago, and he said it is still very tough for him. In fact, as he spoke of his dad, his eyes filled with tears. So we shared some things about my mom and his dad that we miss. And I cried. But it was a good cry.

My grief is a sacred thing. My love for my mother has no end. I will be missing her today, on Mother's Day. I'll also be rejoicing with my wonderful husband and three beautiful daughters. Sometimes I see Mom's expressions in my daughters, and sometimes I do things that remind the girls of my mom. It has a certain symmetry.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

In Black Water Woods

In Blackwater Woods
by Mary Oliver

Look, the trees
are turning
their own bodies
into pillars
of light,
are giving off the rich
fragrance of cinnamon
and fulfillment,
the long tapers
of cattails
are bursting and floating away over
the blue shoulders
of the ponds,
and every pond,
no matter what its
name is, is
nameless now.
Every year
everythingI have ever learned
in my lifetime
leads back to this:
the fires
and the black river of loss
whose other side
is salvation,
whose meaning
none of us will ever know.
To live in this world
you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it
against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.