For Mama

I didn’t post yesterday for Mother’s Day. The reasons for this were numerous. For one, I was extremely busy. For another, I was torn between being happy my kids were all home and spending time with me and sad that for the first time in my life, I didn’t have a mother to call.

I used to write poetry for my mother. When I was a little girl, she was, in my eyes, the most beautiful woman in the world. She later became my best friend, my sounding board for life decisions. When I was in college, “long distance” fees on phone calls were still a thing, so we limited ourselves to one call a week to catch up. It became a tradition that lasted well into my married life when the children were small and past the point where “long distance” wasn’t a problem anymore. I continued to make those calls even when she began refusing to speak on the phone, always hoping to hear her voice, just for a moment.

I found a voicemail on my phone. It’s about three years old from the time before she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. I’ve listened to it once and saved it on my phone and sent it to my brothers. That voicemail is precious to me even though I can’t bear to listen to it. The guilt is real, still. What was I doing that I couldn’t answer the phone? Did I call her back?

Didn’t I realize I wouldn’t have her forever?

And because this is my first Mother’s Day without my mother, yesterday was, I guess, a sort of poet’s moment of silence. But now I want to share. Here’s my beautiful Mama, probably taken on a past Mother’s Day.

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