Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom

Today would be my mom's 58th birthday.
Sydney and I ate chocolate today to celebrate my mom's passion for chocolate. Apparently this has been passed along because Sydney loves chocolate too.

I have to say the hardest part about losing my mom is that Sydney and her baby brother will never have the opportunity to meet and get to know their grandma. Well, kind of. You see, something extraordinary happened about six months ago, something that I still think of often and I am going to share, even though I have gone back and forth on sharing this.

I was telling Sydney about Grandma Wallene one night before bedtime and I asked Sydney if she had ever met her Grandma Wallene. She told me yes. I asked her where she met her and she said, "In my crib. She play toys with me. She read books to me and she called Papa on my blue Cinderella phone." Now this absolutely floored me-Sydney has no idea that my mom and dad were married, she only knows he is married to Nana. And that phone was in her crib for about a month or two. She went on to tell me she sings to her, and then she said, "I can't touch her though." I said, "You can't touch her?" She said no. So I said, "You mean you can see her, but you can't touch her?" Sydney replied with, "Yes, I can see her, I can't touch her."

Of course by this point I was attempting to hold back my tears. I thought it was amazing, but the skeptic in me doubted it..for just a second. I mean really? Is this possible? But how else could a 2 1/2 year old make this stuff up? There is no way. And yet that is something my mom would do. She always told me she would be my angel and she would send me signs she was still around. There was the hug I felt after I walked into our house after my mom passed away-my shirt was moving as if someone was giving me a hug. And then there were the cards-we had quite a few sympathy cards on top of our tv and they would all fall down-at the same time. Multiple times. It became comical and I would laugh and say, "Hi mom." My aunts were even over once when it happened. We knew it was her. I guess I just didn't realize she was still around us after twelve years.

And then yesterday we were driving home and I told Sydney that Grandma Wallene's birthday was today and asked Sydney if she had met Grandma Wallene. She told me yes, in her crib. I asked if she sees her in her new big girl bed and she said no. I asked what her and Grandma Wallene did and she told me they played with toys in her crib and read stories. And then she said, "But I can't touch her." I asked her what Grandma Wallene was wearing and she told me a blue dress. My mom's favorite color is blue and she loved dressing up for work-heels and all. I can totally see this. And then Sydney told me Grandma Wallene kisses her goodnight.

So there you have it-my children will never really know their Grandma Wallene, but I feel pretty confident that Sydney has "met" her Grandma.

I'm sharing this because it's something that has meant so much to me during times when I am sad my mom isn't here to see her grandchildren. I can't even explain how proud and delighted she would be to have grandchildren. She would have adored Sydney so much.

I love the fact that I can look at Sydney and see my mom. They have some of the same facial expressions and the same happiness and joy with life. Sydney wakes up happy every single morning, and with exception to a tantrum every once in a while, the girl is happy 99.8% of the time. The little things in life delight her. I remember talking with my mom one day, probably a year before she passed away. She was telling me how lucky and blessed she was. She had a wonderful husband, two great kids, a job she enjoyed, terrific family and friends, and a house she loved. She told me she was so happy and she had everything she ever wanted-she said she was blessed. I remember looking at her in amazement. Here was a woman who had lost all her hair from the chemo, was in constant pain because her cancer had spread to her bones, and she was uncertain of how long she would have to live, knowing it wouldn't be more than a year or two. Yet she loved life and appreciated everything she had. She wasn't bitter she was dealt this cancer card, she was happy she was given everything in life she had ever wanted.

Happy Birthday to the most amazing woman I have ever met, and someone who I want to be just like. And someone who has passed down her love of life to my daughter. Thank you mom.


Keli said...

Oh, that is too precious. I love the fact that we know life continues on after this one. In whatever way we choose to believe, it is such a comfort. My middle daughter never met my Grandma, we had a very special relationship as we shared a birthday, but she obsessively asks about her. She knows "Nunn Bee" gave her her thick dark hair, and that she always had pretty fingernails. She loved visiting her grave, and always makes little notes and crafts for her.

I only hope my littlest will have the same veil-less bond with my own mom. And if your mom sees my mom, tell her to have her come and say hi to me. Wouldn't that be the best if they could be heavenly blogging friends, too?

FlyingCats said...

I'm totally bawling. Doesn't help that my hormones are in high gear right now. Thank you for sharing this. Just knowing the person who YOU are, I know your mom must have been a really great woman.

Take care - Kate

Kellye, Chad, Hayden, and Sebastian said...

Thank you for making me cry Stacy!!! OMG! I have so many tears right now. What a fantastic post! I think it is pretty safe to say that we are all surrounded by angels and that your Mom does speak to and play with Sydney. I think they try to speak to us, but we're just so busy to see it. Big hugs to you as you remember your Mom and that's awesome you guys ate the chocolate in memory of her!!!

Kristin said...

Okay, seriously, you have prego friends reading this stuff, and now we're all crying our eyes out!

That was the most beautiful thing ever, and thank you so much for sharing it with all of your friends. I have no doubt that your mom spends lots of time with you guys, and that's just awesome that Sydney has gotten to "meet" her and for you to know that she's a part of Sydney's life, in her own very special way.

Thanks again for sharing your beautiful story!

Why wasn't I invited for the chocolate celebration??? JK!

Jessica Zevely said...

Stacy!!! Oh my Goodness! Even your un-pregnant friend is crying!!! WOW! I'm so happy you shared this. This is such a great thing, I'm so happy that Sydney has this to tell you and she actually remembers it! I'm SO happy for her!

Maybe our kids will have something like this happen with Grandma Rhonda?! Wow, what a good feeling that is!

Love you guys :)

April said...

I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes. Damn pregnancy hormones. What a sweet story. I am so glad you decided to post it. I fully believe that my grandmother "pops in" to check on the boys and I.

Your mom sounds like she was a wonderful woman and a special lady. I wish I could have met her, I am glad Sydney reminder you of her.

FlyingCats said...

Girl, how many pregnant friends do you have right now????

Emily said...

Wow Stacy - that is beautiful! I had tears in my eyes reading this. Thanks for sharing!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your most beautiful memories with us. Sydney is truely blessed having such a loving mother Stacy and grandmother Wallene. Sydney is truely remarkable and I know she is capable of reaching the unexplainable bond with your mother.
Love from a VERY proud "Mam-O"
p.s. Sydney's daddy Anthony is pretty remarkable too!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh Stace! Your mom, I'm sure, is so proud of the great mom you have become and are...she is definitely all around you guys and will be your guardian angel forever-for your whole family. Love you! -niki