It’s Friday, so I drank some wine and made a semi-homemade pizza. Which made me think about my Mom. I made it the way she liked it, with mushrooms and green peppers.
I’ve barely recovered from the stress of going to Albuquerque (her vacation) to say good-bye to her and now I’m stressing about her Memorial Service next weekend here in Wisconsin. I feel like I should be planning a “speech.” But I don’t know what to say. Only what to feel.
I’m not even sure, really, why I’m writing... Because I’m alone and the cats don’t get it.
It seemed like a good idea ten minutes ago, while I waited for my old, ancient computer to fire up. Why in the world would I want to be on a computer after a week of work - on two monitors, trying to help people I don’t know, attempting to assist them in navigating the world of health insurance? And some of them are not very grateful, by the way. But, some of them are. Quite a few of them are, actually. So , I guess I’ll keep my job.
I find myself wondering if my Mom is and/or was ever proud of me? Even just a little. I wish I could have asked her recently, because I still doubt myself.
I did ask her, once, a long time ago, during a card game with her and my Dad.
She said, “Yes, Dawn. I am proud of you. You are your own person, and always have been. You made some bad choices, but you came out okay on the other side. You are my daughter and I only want you to be happy. I love you and I always will.”
That should have been enough. And it was, for awhile, way back when. I felt a kind of parental permission to go off somewhere to seek my adventure.. And so I moved away to Missouri. She visited me once. She slept in my dining room. She wrote me letters the entire time I was away (17 years)... letters covered with stickers and embellished with colored marker (and often a $20 bill tucked inside.) We were pen pals, my Mom and me.
My most recent letter to her (3 months ago or so?) was an interrogation, the basis for a conversation, a deep conversation. I wanted us to know each other again, as mother and daughter. I felt like I had been too far away for far too long. I asked her every question I could think of…her memories, her joys, her regrets (if any), her passions. I longed to know her heart.
Recently (two months ago or so?), I asked her about that letter. She said she wrote back (but I never received it), and she had thrown my letter away. But, how could she? I've saved every single letter she ever wrote me. Why wouldn’t she do the same?
Because there was no need. The truth was in our relationship, the relationship – spoken and unspoken – between a mother and a daughter.
True love. Perfect in any and every way. Always and forever.