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::Fifteen Years::

Four Generations

I LOVE this picture. One of my aunts gave it to me in the past year as they were working on cleaning my grandparents’ home. The woman in the rocking chair is my great-grandmother, the one standing on the left, my grandmother, and the woman in yellow is my mother. Me, I’m the little girl with the 80s hair and untroubled heart.

Last week I spent some time staring at this picture, thinking about each person in it. I don’t remember it being taken, though I know exactly where it was taken. My mother’s face stands out to me the most here. It was before her body was ravaged by the cancer treatments that would “save” her, would give her 10 more incalculably precious years of life. She is younger than I am now in that photo.

Once my dear friend said to me that I often commented on what my mother’s death had taught me, but I didn’t say a lot about what her life had taught me. One thing that comes to mind from this picture is that she loved fiercely and loyally. I’d like to think she passed that tendency on to me, and that I will pass it on to my children. She wasn’t blind to the faults of those she loved and it wasn’t that she didn’t become frustrated or angry because of those things. But if you needed her, oh how she gave her all, threw herself into projects to help those she loved, sometimes at her own expense.

As I make my way through this day I want to hold that thought of her in my head rather than what her death taught me. It feels like a much more fitting way to remember her on the anniversary of her death, by remembering a piece of her beautiful life.

5 Responses to “::Fifteen Years::”

  1. Patti Blaine says:

    Thinking of you today, Lindsey. xo

  2. Meg says:

    She definitely did pass that trait on to you! Such a wonderful thing to remember about her – a legacy any mother would be proud of. I remember her ability to be compassionately practical. She was good at helping all of us do the things that needed to be done, while sympathizing that doing the right thing wasn’t always easy to do. She is missed by all of us.

  3. Rachel says:

    What a beautiful tribute to your mom. I never thought of it that way before but your friend’s words ring true…sometimes we focus our energies more on the death than the life. I love that today you focused on the life.

  4. shannon says:

    Lindsey,
    I rarely have trouble sleeping. But tonight is one of those nights. Rather than toss and turn in between trying to do yogic breaths I decided to get up and do a few things to clear my mind. I’ve missed making time to visit my friend’s blogs, so I hopped on this old computer and yours was the first one I stumbled on. For some reason, I was meant to read this post in this moment… And for that…I thank you. This photo is beautiful – and so is your reflection. I’m sorry that you lost your mother to cancer. And I’m so incredibly happy that a shift has happened for you – to focus and celebrate her life on the anniversary of her death is a reflection of the person you are. Thank you for that inspiration and reminding us all what’s important. Your mother’s life is celebrated each day through you. Sending big hugs your way. And now…I can sleep. xo

    • Lindsey says:

      Shannon, thank you for your words. I don’t know how I didn’t read your message until now, but it was a sweet thing to find as I paused today. I hope you found peaceful rest on that night.

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