Sunday, May 11, 2008

I Still Miss You, Mom.

I was so young when I lost my mother, just 27. It seems so long ago now. I don't grieve the way many people do--don't visit cemeteries much, don't linger over old photos (kind of weird for a photographer, I know), and for a story-teller, I don't even tell my stories much. I guess my grieving is done deep inside me over a very long period of time. Maybe that's why I stay such a mess . . . why it is taking me so long to heal from all the disappointments and losses in my life.

I miss my mom. I wish she was here to talk to about all the hard stuff. She was always there to listen. Sometimes I think I'm making a mess of my life (Yes, Eva, I know. There's no plan B.), but one thing I love about what she taught me: how to put relationships first. She was so great at that. Sure, she probably drove some of her friends nuts with her type A intense personality, but I remember how much she invested of herself in those around her. Even her perfectionism was aimed at making others comfortable (although raking the shag carpet never did much for me).

I miss hearing my mom read to me. She read to my sister and I long after we could read to ourselves--The Chronicles of Narnia, A Bear Called Paddington, Pippi Longstocking. I tell people now that when I look back, I realize that I was government-schooled AND I was homeschooled. My mom just couldn't stop being a teacher, or a learner, just because we weren't in a classroom.

Mom died just as I became a new mom. I am confident God knew what He was doing, but it has never made much sense to me. Just when I needed someone to tell me how to be a mom, she was gone. Even though I don't think about it much, I still feel like I need her today. I wonder if she would have been proud of what I've done, trying to stay home with my boys like she did with us, trying to take responsibility for raising them and teaching them and loving them. God has faithfully provided me lots of other "moms," some very wonderful and close, but just as one of them told me none have taken her place.

I know that heaven should comfort me, but right now, while I'm here and she's there and I can't see heaven's beauty or know the depth of connection and belonging there, I don't feel enough comfort. I realized that there she won't be my mom, though I think that perhaps that I will feel equally connected to everyone. Am I confusing you? Good, because I don't understand it. Suffice it to say, right now knowing that I will see her again doesn't completely comfort me. I just want my mom here and now, and I'll never have that again.

Ugghhh. I sound like I'm drowning in sadness, but actually I'm grateful. I loved my mom, and I know she loved me. She was my dearest and best friend. So much of what I beleive and love has been impacted by her that I miss not being able to share it with her. At the same time, as I write I realize how much grief I still have over her absence in my life.

I miss you, Mom. Happy Mother's Day.


Anonymous said...

Dear Lisa,

I know what you are saying about missing your Mom. I felt sort of "lost" on Sunday without being able to take flowers to my Mom or be able to read to her at PRC. It was a strange sort of day even though I had a son, daughter-in-love and three grandchildren sitting right next to me in church!They even came over later in the day to continue to celebrate...but I still missed my own Mom.

Thank you for sharing of yourself lthe way you do.

love, helen

Anonymous said...

Hi, Lisa,

I've been meaning to comment for some time now... sorry it's taken me so long! This post really touched me, and made me appreciate my own mother even more. Thank you for being so open and willing to share your emotions. Your transparency is a gift to your readers.

Laura Caldwell

PS: We're moving back to Jax! Email me at -- I don't have your email address.