Monday, September 6, 2010


If my mom were the type to allow naked displays of helplessness, you would be tempted (the day you found out her very best friend had died while holding her hand) to go directly to her side, give her a big hug, and tell her how sorry you are for her loss.  My brother tried to do that, in fact, and her response to his outstretched arms was, and I quote, "Don't touch me."  As she pushed past him. 

Because I'm no amateur when it comes to dealing with her, I took a slightly different tact.  I waited two days (I didn't even call her!  let her wonder!  haha!) then I showed up unannounced with two propagated hummingbird sages and two transplanted hollyhocks that self-started in my front yard.  I said, "Hey.  Look what I brought."  With no other words, we headed outside to rake, dig, move, load, and water. 

Because that's how we roll.  Feeling blue?  Get to work!

I was there for nine hours today.  We worked in the yards, fed the horses, cleaned the goat pen, collected eggs, washed the miniature horse's pool, ran errands, downloaded photos, bought a Waldorf Doll from an Etsy shop for Marie's granddaughter, and watched a little college football for good measure.  And in the smallest bits, with no prompting at all, she shared a few thoughts, a bit of her feelings, and some of her grief.  Just the tiniest amounts, but it's not about what I needed her to do.  It's about whatever she needs to get through this.

"I need you to do something for me," she said through tears as we raked.  "Okay," I answered, already tearing up.  "You have to go through my hope chest to get some pictures for Jenny for the service.  I tried, and I can't do it."

That....wasn't pleasant, I won't lie to you.  I giggled at some of the pictures, and cried over others, and generally needed to lie down and wash my face at the end of that little chore.  But I can see her point.  Obviously, she needed help with that one.

The service will be in a couple of weeks, as we wait for her youngest son to get over here from Hawaii, but it will be months...years...possibly ever....before my mom is able to really talk about what happened. 

I plan to be there, if she ever decides to make the leap.  I plan to be there if she doesn't, too.


  1. Your mom sounds like a great gal and I'm so sorry for her loss and yours. It appears to me that you are one of the great ones too;)

  2. I'm sorry for your loss, but what a great friend your mama has in you. Hugs

  3. @ Linda and @ Brit ~ thank you thank you thank you

  4. It's lovely that you knew exactly what your mom needed... so many people (myself included) don't know what to do or how to act when a loss happens. I hope the time spent with her outdoors was therapeutic for you, too.