Everybody . . . this is Mom . . .
My biggest supporter. My biggest champion. The first person I wanted when the troopers came to tell me about Prince Charming’s accident. The person I could always count on to step up and tell me when I was wrong. She (figuratively) kicked my butt more than once when she thought I needed it . . . even if I didn’t want to hear it. But she also sang my praises from the roof tops to anyone who would listen for all of my successes.
She came from a massively dysfunctional family and had a very unhappy childhood. She swore that she would not make the same mistakes her parents had made and was going to find a man that loved and cherished her and wouldn’t settle for anything less than someone who would appreciate all the gloriousness that she was. She met the love of her life on a blind date, got engaged a month later, married him three months after that and they lived happily ever after for just shy of 62 years when he passed away.
Family was always first and she and my Dad instilled that into all of us kids from an early age. She always told us girls that you “have a man in your life because you want a man in your life, not because you need a man in your life.” She and Dad taught us girls how to stand on our own two feet and how to do things to take care of ourselves. Not just “girly” things like housework and cooking but how to change a flat tire and change the oil in your car and yard work. Oh heavens did they ever teach us about yardwork.
She taught my brother that he needed to do stuff for himself because he didn’t need some woman to take care of him. She made him take a typing class in high school so he could type his own papers when he went to college. He learned to cook and clean, too. His wife is very thankful to my Mom for all of that.
She raised six kids . . . and buried two. She loved being a mom and a grandma . . . and hounded each of her grandkids to give her great-grandkids because “I’m not getting any younger and I might not be here much longer!” . . . to which the grandkids always said “Grandma!! I’m only (insert very young age here) and I’m not out of college yet/not married yet/not ready for kids!” Which always made her smile . . . she was thankful the kids were strong enough to know what they wanted and wouldn’t give in to a grumpy Grandma just because she said so . . . .
I love her with all my heart . . . and it took me until I was an adult to appreciate all the sassiness that was my glorious Mom . . . our Saturday Night Adventures after my Dad died were stuff of family legend. The time the guy paid for our meal at Steak N Shake because we were so much fun to watch. The time she almost “stole” batteries from the Dollar Tree because they were under her purse in the cart and she forgot to pay for them.
She gave me the courage to face life without my beloved Prince Charming and I helped her learn how learn how to live with my Dad.
I lost my buddy on Monday afternoon. She had been in a relatively minor car accident on April 30. We thought she was going to be okay. The doctors thought she was going to be okay. She had some underlying medical issues that weren’t serious before the accident but became more complicated after the accident. The trauma was just too much for her little body to recover from.
We haven’t really come to terms with the fact that she’s gone . . . making funeral arrangements today was surreal . . . how can she be gone? Is this all a horrible dream that I’ll wake up from?
This wonderful lady taught me many lessons in her lifetime . . . but she forgot to teach me how to live without her.