Letter to my Mother

Dear Mom

It’s strange how the world works. I’d been struggling to think of the topic for my very first blog post and because of that I’ve been putting it off. I know there’s nothing too momentous about it, after all, it’s just a beginning. But still, it feels like a birth of sorts.

Today is the anniversary of your death – it’s been two years since we lost you. I remember the day of course, which dawned like any other day. I remember that in the end, the end was a release. No one tells you that, certainly not Hollywood. They don’t tell you that very often,  the person you love leaves their body days before the machine that is their physical self eventually shuts down. But humans are very physical beings. So when we say that you died of brain cancer, we say that you died on 10 October 2010.

You died when Rachel was five months old. I’m grateful you got to hold her in your arms, even though you were so weak from chemo that we were scared you’d drop her. I’m glad you got to see me as a Mom, even though it was for a short while. I’m glad I have photos of Rachel with her Granny so that I can explain it to her, one day when she’s bigger.

I tell her about you every night. I kiss her blonde curls and I say that Mommy loves you. Then I run through everyone we know and say they love her too. And I always end by telling her that her Granny loves her most of all. She knows who you are, because I point you out in pictures all the time. I don’t quite know how to explain to a two year old that you died, so I don’t say anything. I think she understands.

Last night I was thinking about you and getting emotional – and Gareth was away on business. We were snuggled on the couch together, me and her, watching CBeebies. She saw me crying and put her little arms around my neck and stroked away my tears. She kept saying “You okay Mummy?” and “Mummy no cry” and eventually the tears stopped.

I guess I can also blame it on the hormones because you see, I’m twelve weeks pregnant today. You’re going to be a Granny again. If you were here I know you’d be knitting tiny jerseys and making quilts and telling all your friends with pride in your voice. Although I’m grateful for the 31 years I had with you, it still hurts. Whenever Rachel does something adorable, or learns a new skill, it’s you I want to call.

So maybe this blog is a way of telling you my stories. If I can’t call you up, then at least I can put them down. Today may be the day of my first blog post but it is also a day of missing my mother, loving my daughter, looking back and still moving on. I love you.

Belinda

Photo courtesy of Camilla Blomfield at Freshshoots