A Most Wonderful Daily Reminder

My lovely Mother Barbara, and me, 14 years ago, playing in a photo booth at the wharf in Monterey.

And just like that, the tears started to come. I wasn't quite sure why. And you know something? It almost came without me even thinking about it. I was at the bus stop last night, completely unsuspecting, until I got home and looked at a calendar.

Today will be 5 years to the day, that my Mom died of cancer. Not a day goes by that I don't think of her, wake up from a dream about her or exhibit some subtle, or not too subtle, (if you knew her, you'd understand.) air of her behavior. Within me, I have many elements of her personality, beauty and creativity. I feel lucky every time I experience the magical daily reminders of the wonderful lessons, traits, habits and characteristics of being human, that she taught and shared with me.

So, here I am. 5 years have past since she left and again, just like every other year, I find myself reflecting. She has missed so much! Here are a few events, among so many, that stand out. Our trek to the 2009 Inauguration of President Obama in Washington D.C., of which she would have been so proud. The incredible trip we took to Spain for my 40th birthday where Ken asked me to marry him and then the absolutely perfect and intimate City Hall ceremony that followed, nine months later.  Our amazing 1100+ mile northern Nevada Desert road trip that we did on our motorcycles, which included 100 off road on dirt and gravel(!). (She shared my passion for two wheels.) Then there are the (literally) hundreds of sweet and savory dishes that have been both baked and cooked in our "galley-like" kitchen since she last shared a meal here with us. Boy, did she love good food! And we can't leave out the feline additions of both Theodore (formal adoption) in 2008 and Jasper (the feral kitten we rescued from our yard) just a little over a year ago. I know she would have just adored our newest boys.

(Pablo and she were old pals, as you can see here, he loved his Grandma!)

Even with the sadness that comes from the reality of my Mother being gone, the one constant that helps to comfort me during all of these great experiences is my awareness that she is physically, emotional and habitually a part of me. Because of this, in a sense, she has experienced all of these moments, memories and events and will continue to do so throughout my life. I miss her dearly, but that thought helps to carry me through. It also has the power to evoke so many of the memories from the times that we shared during our lives together, as mother and daughter and friends.

Maybe next year will finally be the year when the 6th of September can come and go and I won't even pause. Maybe, just maybe, it will be like every other day; I will think of her, miss having her here, feel her inside of me and smile.

I love you M.
Your adoring Pajarita,