My mom has left the Earth but not my heart, those beating inside my three older brothers who grew up on a Maine farm.
Got to know her so well because of all the time we spent in each other’s lives during our childhoods.
Lessons learned working side by side. Living local.
Stories of family members before her shared along with lots of black and white images parked in stacks and stacks of photo albums.
Mother’s Day when your mom has passed away still celebrated, with memories warm, special, cherished.
Recalling my mom today in a mental projector of one by one picture splashes. Seeing her tending large flower gardens and remembering her love of big fat, red breasted Robins that would hop hop hop. Looking for worms, breakfast as she hummed a song, was industrious on her knees. Pulling grass, weeding, transplanting and spacing out seedlings in the many flower beds that populated the large Maine farm lawns around several buildings.
I see my mom cooking up a storm, wearing an apron. The kitchen radio serenading with music. Always music in our household. As she creates to die for fresh, hot trademark locally famous cinnamon buns. Baked beans, turkey dinners. Or playing the piano and the sound of church hymns flooding the home when coming in for a drink of water. Christmas songs played around the holidays and enriched because she was the source of the festive music.
Poor mom lived, ran a household of all men.
Dad, four boys and not much in the way of female companionship or sharing but close to her daughter in laws. The grandchildren that were girls finally so much enjoyment talking about things ladies enjoy. Like me, my brothers when coming up the long driveway after hopping off the Maine school bus. Greeted with swimming home made donuts in hot grease. And a waiting sugar bowl to rol, coat them in. The traditions passed on. Enriching the life of all the next generation of Mooers children.
I miss sitting in the Maine farm house kitchen with the wood stove radiating, the pair of rocking chairs in use. During tea time and home made cookies. Time not just me, my brothers got to enjoy communication with our mom. But grandchildren listening to stories, given old wise sage advice. The same discussions that happened on the front glass porch while in the squeaky glider. She in the wicker rocker. Or sitting outside under a large lilac bush in lawn chairs.
Mom was a reader.
Loved biographies especially. Was a faithful user of Cary Library. Got her children into the habit of enjoying books, reading as we grew up. And made the trip to the granite stone book public depository with the glass second floor in the original building.
Mom worked just as hard as Dad in the farm fields. Behind the scenes in every business endeavor Dad lead her into. She grew up on a dairy farm in Maine which meant there was not a lazy bone to be found in her body. And that tradition of being industrious, have a system, do it right was engrained, passed on to her flock of boys. But her pretty hands with painted nails, her cherished ring collection passed down from Aunt Emma, others showed us another side of my mom. When she dressed up frilly, feminine for church. She was a classic lady. With the pill box, other assortment of hats woman used to wear back in the 1960’s to the house of worship.
Playing the organ at church, teaching Sunday school, reciting scripture that was applied, passed on to the Maine household.
To learn from, lean on during storms in our life. But also to count our blessings, one by one. To be ever grateful. To make sure we gave thanks to God, our creator. Appreciate our lucky spot in life to feel fortunate about. To realize others suffer far more through ordeals we were for some reason are spared. And they were not. Look for the good, make yourself happy and avoid “stinkin’ thinkin'” a constant, practiced by my Mom.
Moderation, being even keeled and steady as she goes. With a healthy diet of the right food, rest, carrying around good thoughts, spiritual “garden tending” inside and out. Practiced, applied daily. With a sense of humor, a keen interest in others and being well read. A thinker, philosopher and one heck of a partner for life to my Dad. Who she accepted, improved, enriched and understood better than he did at times. Not competing, not ridiculed but appreciated for where he shined. And adding her talents for any holes, or areas that he was not so well versed.
Miss you mom but still like my three brothers have conversations, include her in our prayers.
And so so grateful we had the kind of special mom we did. That was so loving, non judgmental and so darn practical, consistent, principled. Her lessons still apply and have caught myself when in a hurry to do a task, stop, smile. Say out loud “Okay mom, you’re right”. And go back and do it the right way. The way I was taught as the way it was supposed to be done. That in the long run was best for me, all concerned.
Talked to a cousin this morning who’s mom, my Aunt is 86 and in assisting living. With a stroke keeping her from being table to talk. And saying when his two sisters came up to visit yesterday, and like they do every three weeks from down country, they have to have a pair. To have conversations she can listen to but not contribute to because of her loss of speech. And my cousin joking with her about her not repeating anything she heard today to any one okay? His mom smiling and accepting the way it is. But glad her children take the time to visit, live in the same state and reach out to stay connected.
Maine, big state, less people, closer tight knit families.