My darling Mom passed away peacefully earlier today, with my sister and her husband by her side. So, I didn’t get to see her again, which saddens me greatly. I don’t think anything can prepare us for the death of a parent, and especially a mother. There is such a special bond between a mother and her child, which is profound and unfathomable. Whilst I had my mom, I was still her child. Now that she’s gone, I feel somewhat at a loss. My dad died ten years ago, and that was really hard, but I still had my mom, so all was not lost. Over the past couple of years, her mental health had deteriorated and she’d become very frail. I think that last week when she stopped eating and couldn’t even swallow liquids, she had decided that she’d had enough and it was now time to go to her eternal rest. I have so many happy memories to hold onto, and that twinkle in her eye is one of them.
Mom was always of very slim build; on a sofa she took up hardly any space at all. In spite of her slight frame, she was a powerhouse of energy and wasn’t at all afraid of hard work. I remember that when I was a child, she worked from early morning and often late into the night doing stuff for her family. We didn’t have money to spare, so she made what we did have, stretch and stretch as far as possible. She baked and pickled and bottled and sewed as though her life depended on it. She made sure that my sister and I were always well turned out, and she spent many evenings making us beautiful dresses and jackets. She not only cleaned her own house, but also went out to clean an elderly neighbour’s house in her ‘spare’ time. Mom taught me how to iron at a very early age, and I remember how proud I was as an eight-year-old, to be able to iron dad’s handkerchiefs. She was a timid cook but a fantastic baker. Her apple pies and coconut tarts were second to none, and every day, we had dessert of some kind. Her “wait and see” chocolate pudding was our absolute favourite.
Mom had a sharp wit and a wonderful sense of humour. When were together, the smiles and laughter came thick and fast. She saw the funny side of everything, and I’ve inherited this sometimes embarrassing trait. My sister is the same but even worse, and when the three of us got together, you would have been forgiven for assuming that we’d been let out for the day from some institution for the insanely comical. I’ve also passed this gene on to my daughter, and our long-suffering husbands have just had to learn to live with it, bless their cotton socks.
Some of you may remember that Mom celebrated her 90th birthday at the end of May. It was a very special occasion indeed, and I didn’t realise then that it would be the last time I saw her.
Mom’s unwavering faith in God has been a constant in our family, and she has set a great example to us all. She wasn’t perfect of course, but she truly believed that one day she would be with her Lord in Paradise. Oh that we could all find the perfect peace that she felt about moving on from this earthly life. Mom you will forever be in my heart.
Today has been very traumatic and many tears have been shed, but I thought I’d just let you know what’s been happening with me. Hubby and I will be in South Africa for the memorial service on Tuesday, and will stay for a while with my sister, so that we can spend time together, remembering our Mom and chatting about the good times. I’ll see you all when I return to Florida.