Mothers’ Day Without My Mom


It has been (what feels like) forever ago since the last time I saw my Mom. Yet, it is difficult to believe that it will be four years next month since she passed from this earthly world.

On the eve of Mothers’ Day, I find myself thinking about the last Mothers’ Day that she was alive.

I flew down to California to spend a few days.  She was still in a rehab facility, and we were trying to come up with a plan to get her back to her home.

I do not remember a lot about that day. In fact, my memories might be inaccurate, as I was making the trip down every couple of weeks to do what I could. Some of the details (below) about who was there and what all transpired is now a bit fuzzy for me.

I do remember that several of her friends and family members (those who live in California) came to visit.  I also seem to remember my sister-in-law giving Mom a haircut that day. I am sure that Mom and I played dominoes for a couple of hours.

For dinner, I went to El Pollo Loco and brought back dinner to share with her friends, Joann and DeeDee, my sister Erika, Mom and me. I think we had enough food for twice as many. We all sat in the big entry room, visiting and celebrating Mom that day. I think we all knew it would be the last Mothers’ Day with her.

Much has happened since Mom has been gone, as life continues to tick away. For some of it, I am glad that she was spared having to live through it to watch the struggles that any of her loved ones have faced without her here.

So many times, I have wished I could pick up the telephone to call her. I truly miss her tender heart veiled in sarcastic banter. I did not always know how to take it, but I have come to understand how her brand of humor helped her get through the trials of her life. I find her style of words coming out of my own mouth a lot more nowadays.

My mother, Marian Levang, and me on Mothers' Day 2011.
My mother, Marian Levang, and me on Mothers’ Day 2011.

There are very few pictures that I have of the two of us in our adult years.  She did not like having her picture taken, which you can see in her expression.

It had been a long day and, had I realized how bad I looked, I would not have allowed this one to be taken. (I also look very different four years later than I did in this photograph, as I did not know that I was also quite ill at that time.)  Yet, it is one of my favorite pictures that I have of the two of us.

Tomorrow, I will miss being able to call my Mom, but I will spend some time celebrating the woman that she was and always will be.

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10 thoughts on “Mothers’ Day Without My Mom

  1. Thanks for posting you heart warming story about your mom. We all have a special relationship with our moms and when they are gone it is heartbreaking. I miss my mom every day. In 2006 my mom was doing poorly after a five year battle with mantle cell lymphoma. Our family was planning on having a reunion to say good by in October but she passed in September. I was heartbroken that I didn’t get to be with her one last time before she died. We planned a public remembrance gathering that October which was attended by more than 100 friends, family, students, and former students. She taught private piano lessons for most of her life and the stories of her former students of how she inspired them and changed their lives were remarkable.

  2. Happy Mother’s Day, Coral. For the first time in years, I’ll be celebrating Mother’s Day with my son, who has been in the service since March, 2001, and for that I am happy. But for the first time, I won’t be spending today with any of my 3 daughters. We didn’t plan it this way. It just happened. As far as my mom is concerned, I’ll be calling her when she gets home from church. Have a glorious day, Coral!

    1. Enjoy your day, Theresa! It was intended that I spend the day in Seattle with my daughter today, but I have not received a phone call or email from her to set any time/place. So, I’ve been up and showered, and I am changing my plans. I am going to find something that I want to do today. I live two hours from her, so need more than last minute. I think I’m going to head out to the ocean, instead. I hope we have the sunshine today that we have had for the last several days!! Much love to you, Theresa! xo

  3. Thank you for your writing! My Natural Mom passed away at 58, so she has been gone for quite awhile. She was very ill, so I am relieved that she is no longer suffering. I miss being able to talk to her! I have a ‘Chosen’ Mom who has been there for me for 40 Years. She has Dementia, so now I see glimpses of who she was, rather than all of her, present, available. I enjoyed pampering her, doing her nails, giving her a massage. It was really sweet to see her childish delight, at this little expression of love. We are blessed, those of us who have experienced the love of a Mother.

  4. Pingback: Mothers Day Lessons: Learning to say, “I love you” – BEYOND THE CHALLENGES OF LIFE

  5. Gary M Mutchler

    It was May 8, 2017 that my mother went to be with the Father in heaven. My wife Adana and I were her care givers for the last 17 yrs. we lived with her and took care of all her needs. I still expect to see her come walking across the room to sit down at the table in “her” chair. The thing about parents and siblings is in my experience is that they’re always with us no matter how many years go by since they left this world. My uncle younger brother has been gone 33 years and I still find myself wanting to call him. I don’t know if I said anything that makes any sense so I will stop here and I am not sure what to say or how to get where I was going.

    1. It’s hard to believe that they are gone. It’s new for you yet. Cannot believe it’s been nearly seven for my mother. Not sure it gets “easier,” but the sting lessens.

  6. susanehowe

    Thanks Coral for writing that. This is my first Mother’s Day without my mom. It is one of the hardest days I have had so far….much more difficult than Christman and even her birthday. How I miss her and her desire to always be involved with family. It’s funny you should mention it but I, too, have noticed that I am saying and doing some of the things I remember my mom saying and doing. I am embarrassed to say that some of those things really frustrated me….not sure why, but now it all seems to silly. I still have some of her voice mails and listen to them often. She was/is definitely an amazing role model. I can only hope to be part of the woman that she was. Miss you mom. xoxox

    1. Susan…thank you for sharing this. Your mother was such a joy and I am glad that I had the opportunity to spend some time with her (and you) six years ago. Hugs and much love to you.

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