Day 357

Dear Mama,

It’s been a year since you died. In many ways, it feels like a lifetime ago, but it’s only been 365 days. The pain isn’t as sharp or pronounced anymore, it’s been replaced with a dull ache. I miss you so much. 

I got married on Sunday. I thought about you often through the day, wondering how you would have reacted seeing me in my wedding dress next to Stephen and if you would have walked me down the aisle. When we first settled on the date, I voiced some concern to Rabbi Kim about how close it was to your yahrzeit, but she reassured me by telling a story from the Talmud. 

There was a wedding procession and funeral procession that were on two different paths. They met at a crossroads and there was some debate about who should go first. Eventually it was ruled that the wedding procession should go first because celebrating life is a priority in Judaism. It’s important to hold both the joy and the sorrow, but the joy means that life goes on and that’s what we are compelled to do, live life even as we mourn those we have lost. 

You would have loved the bright colors we chose for the wedding and reception. I made sure there were details in the wedding that referenced you. The ketubah had 3D butterflies and I wore the earrings I gave you over 12 years ago, the John Hardy flower ones, along with the matching pendant. I saved a chair for you in the front row and had Maxine in some of the photos. Having her there was almost like having you there with me. She was such a good girl and behaved for the most part, only barking a few times. I talked about you in my vows and how much Stephen has given back to me after I lost so much. 

Stephen reminds me a lot of you in certain ways. The way he’s raising his kids and their relationship reminds me of ours. He’s kind and open-hearted and I think you would have liked him. I’m not sure if you would ever have told him that, but I think you’d be happy knowing that I found someone who loves and cares for me deeply and you would have grown to love his children too. 

We’re expecting our first child together in late May. I desperately wish you were here so I could ask questions about your pregnancy. I’m scared, mostly that I won’t be a good mom, but Stephen has been a rock for me and my friends and community already love this baby girl so much. We’ve settled on her legal and Hebrew names, both of which honor you. I can’t wait to meet her and I hope I can give her as much love and opportunity to be herself as you gave me. 

Stephen and I are currently on our honeymoon in Colorado. I asked for snow and he arranged everything and he really delivered. We went tubing this morning and it was so much fun. I was apprehensive at first, but I loved it. While we were taking a break, I thought of you and just burst into tears. Stephen simply held me and let me cry, telling me, as you so often did, that it was good to cry and let it out. 

Stephen pointed out how proud you must have been of me and how I am a sort of living product of your life. I know you were proud, even if you didn’t say it out loud often. I knew it from your actions and felt it from the love you exuded, even when you were pissed off with me. You would be proud of the life I’ve built and how different it is from yours, which I know is what you wanted. You wanted me to have better life than you and I do, in many ways, even though you are not here to share it with me now. 

I miss you so much. I miss talking to you and watching you with our dogs. I miss seeing you reading and napping on the couch. I miss hearing your voice and laughter. I think about you every day and more often than not, I wear a piece of your jewelry too. I wish you were going to be here to hold your granddaughter, but she will know who you are, I promise you that. I will continue to live a life that you would have been proud of and will raise my little girl with as much love as you did with me. I love you so much. 

I hope you are up there with all of your beloved rescue dogs, especially Bowser. Please give them all a big hug for me and an extra long one for Roxy. 



One comment

  1. You are going to be a great mom ! You have a great example, your mom
    Even though she is not hear physically you will remember what she did that made you happy. You may not do things the way she did exactly but you will find a way. I miss her too all the times she made me laugh and when she had her escape plan from her last residence
    It was all planned out

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