Friday, May 18, 2007

Howdy, Mother's Day, Grieving

Hi F.O.T.E's,
The following lines were written, golly...a month ago, I guess. Life called, and I had to save the post as a draft. Yeah--you know, *draft,* those things that get set aside to "come back to later." LOL...With The Ewe, it ends up being *much* later...anyway, without further ado...

How are ya? I can hardly believe the way time slips away from me between posts. I'll see if I can't remember what's been going on around here...

We've moved up in vehicle size...bought a 15-passenger van a few weeks ago. I immediately thought of it as The Jolly Green Giant, but The Ram and littles liked Maewyn Succat--St. Patrick's real name. We also considered The Incredible Hulk, but decided something honoring St. Patrick might be nicer. :-) I know you're wondering, "Is it safe to be on the road with her out driving that thing?" Well, so far, I haven't run over anything I shouldn't. I do still approach the van w/ a bit of fear and trembling and drive very cautiously. :-)

We took our first big trip in Maewyn last week--drove down to see my dad and family. Everything went great and driving through St. Louis was not the trial I expected.
(The rest of the post, I wrote today, June 13, 2007...)
It was great being at my dad's house the week before Mother's Day. We spent a couple nights, so I actually got to poke around in some of Mom's stuff...Don't worry, Daddy invited me to do that, lol.
It seems I hardly knew Mama. So many of her things I'd never laid eyes on. A real treasure Daddy showed me was a tea set that was Mama's when she was a little girl. Daddy pulled out a neat little cardboard box that had Mama's unmistakable handwriting on top. (Mama had the most beautiful handwriting until her illnesses stole it away.) Mama had written that the tea set had been given to her by her older brother Oscar before he had been killed by a drunk driver. (He was much older than Mama, who was the baby of 11 children.) We pulled out the glistening little pieces and I wondered why Mama had never shown the set to me before. I imagine "life called" and she just never got around to it. Also, tucked down in the drawer with that tea set was my little set that Mama gave me as a child. I thought it was beautiful--white with the blue delft pattern. I was never allowed to play with it, lol. Mama said I could have it when I was "old enough not to break it." ROTFLOL That just cracks me up. I never did get old enough. :-)
Even in the company of all those irreplaceable china pieces, the thing I treasured most about that discovery was Mama's beautiful handwriting on the top of the box. She penned those words during a time before disease began eating away at her body, while her fingers were nimble and her mind sharp.
Alongside the tea sets were several fetching sweaters that had never been worn. Mama had crocheted those, I think. I imagine she intended to gift someone with them, but on second thought deemed them "not perfect enough." LOL Any of us would have loved them, just because she had made them...Which is not to say that they looked substandard--*I* could not spot an imperfection.
Driving back from that trip, I kept thinking about Mama and this being my first Mother's Day without her. I remember buying her Mother's Day gift last year--some citrusy, yummy smelling hand soap that now sits beside Daddy's kitchen sink. I bought that last year, not knowing that would be the last Mother's Day gift I would ever buy Mama.
I think I'm finally beginning to really grieve. It's not a racking, painful thing, but rather a gentle ache. Looking through Mama's crocheted afghans, knowing her hands formed those very loops, it felt as if she hadn't gone anywhere. Like she might walk in at any time. I'm sad that I never knew her very well. I don't want to leave my children behind one day and have them say, "I never really knew Mama very well."
That all encouraged me to tell my children about my childhood, my dreams, my failings...I don't someday want their grief to be from a sense of missing out on really knowing me.
I've got a bushel load of other things to tell you about, but life's calling again...this time it's a matter about peanut butter balls. I'm kinda afraid to go look at the kitchen...Hey, remind me next time to tell you about the Kirby man. LOL
Y'all keep your wool dry!!!
The Ewe

Quote of the Day: "It's more important to do the right thing, than to make the right plan."
--The Ram (ain't he smart??? I just love him!)