11 and 17

11 years ago…..
I said goodbye to my best friend, my mom.

11 years ago I cried and held her hand as I watched the machines lines go straight. A couple weeks before that I told her I loved her and she said, “Don’t cry.  I’ll see you later.  I love you more.”  Those were our last words.
11 years ago I watched my family sit around a table and make the hardest decision of our lives.  One that I question almost daily, for many reasons.
11 years ago I was amazed by the amount of people in the hallways and waiting rooms of that hospital.  All people who loved her.  Who loved us.  Who couldn’t believe she was gone.
11 years ago I stood accepting hugs and “I’m Sorry’s” by some of the most amazing friends, family, neighbors, and community members.  To this day I’m not a fan of hugs.  They remind me of her funeral.  I’m trying to overcome that.

17 years…..

17 years of the absolute most amazing mom there ever was, without a doubt.

17 years of her packing my lunch for school.
17 years of her making me try new things at dinner.

17 years of the best birthdays and holidays any kid could ever imagine.
17 years of Saturday shopping trips to the mall and Kohl’s.
17 years of room mom and soccer mom and PTO mom and everything mom.
17 years of piano lessons and playing to watch her smile.
17 years of Sunday morning organ playing and cinnamon rolls.
17 years of Friday night basketball and football games and slumber parties afterwards.
17 years of “I love you more’s” at bedtime.
17 years of 4-H fun.
17 years of hugs that were warm and will never be replaced.

17 years.

Today and every December 1st for the rest of my life I will do my very best to remember the 17 over the 11, or the 12, or the 13, or whatever that number may be.

Someone once sent me this in an email, “You can’t measure life in quantity but look at life as a quality thing.  There are lots of people who have their family with them for a very long time, but don’t have much in the way of a quality relationship nor are they fortunate enough to have what you and your mom had.  I’m sure you would agree that you and your mom had lots and lots of quality time.”

I certainly agree now.  In the beginning I might not have.  But I certainly agree now.

Another quote I was sent, “Mothers, since time began, have been the ones who give us our base, our sense of who we are….our shared identities….our strengths.”

Missing my angel mother,

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