Saturday, February 16, 2013

happy birthday Mom*

"You will lose someone you can’t live without,
and your heart will be badly broken,
and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp." 

— Anne Lamott

today is my mom's 4th birthday in heaven.  there are no words to describe the loss and sadness one feel.  then, with every thought of not being able to hear her voice, or to touch her face, or to hug her, the vey thought of her not being alive, gets so overwhelming, i turn to the photos.... the physical proof that she was in fact, alive. to only realize, that she was indeed, gone, because we will not have new photos of her... every time we look through the photos, it is the same photos...of years ago...and the latest of 4 years ago... and you don't know how it all happened.. you don't know how you got through these 4 years of her not being here... you cling onto these memories, forever etched in your heart and the knowing that she was here. she was your mom. 

here are 35 photos with 35 things about my mom.... a little trip down memory lane for me. 

happy birthday mom xx

she was a beautiful, elegant woman who, for those who knew her, 
wore her heart on her sleeve.  :-) 

she was creative. she used to make track suites and pajamas for the 3 of us... every year. 

gardening was her muse, her meditation. she used to get up at 5am to work in her garden and my dad had to install spotlights so that she can continue her gardening when it gets dark. 
she LOVED it... we would always find her in the garden planting something, changing something, adding something... and she would always have a smile on her face...

 she met my son. i'm so grateful that my mom got to meet kellen.  she came to visit for a few months but the two of them had quite a rocky start :-).  i love this photo, it is one of 3 i have of the two of them and this day was the first day that he went and sat next to her.  i love the light behind my mom... in a way it reminds me of where she is... 

 she was not afraid of Leo.  everyone is afraid of this dog, but not my mom. she used to let him come into her room and lay with her. she would put her head right next to his and talk with him. 

she loved her glass of wine

she was adventurous.  the last 7 years of her life she and my dad lived in slave lake, canada and she did ice-fishing, with one arm (her left arm was broken in 2 places)...but nothing could keep her from having fun! 

she loved to sleep. whenever we went on a road-trip, it took her about 5 (five!) minutes to get us all going, then she would make herself comfortable and sleep the rest of the journey. she loved that. she also always put in lunch for a picnic along the road. in this photo she literally just woke up, ate a sandwich and went back to sleep..hehe... 

she knew how to cuddle/snuggle.  and we got our 'morning hair' from her..hehe.. 

she was funny. here it was 1am one evening during our december holidays and she decided she wanted to play golf... 

she loved her husband. (and gifts).  this was taken on xmas holiday. it was easy for her to show affection.  about the gifts part.. she preferred many small gifts...but never one big one. she wanted many little things to open and would always get so excited about each gift.  one year, we each gave her a flower vase and after opening the 4th gift, and it was done, she looked at us, hands folded and asked: 'ok, where is the rest?" 

another time, at 12am, it was just the start of mother's day. she came walking down the steps and called: cooeee-ieeee... it's mother's day, you can bring the gifts'... 

she took care of herself. she always had a little bottle of cream in her handbag. 

she came prepared. this was the content of her handbag, which i unpacked and photographed after her death.  she always had gum, sweets, her camera and cream in her bag. 

she loved flowers.  she always had fresh flowers in her home.  always. you could brighten up her day with any little or big flower. you could see her spirits lift when she looked at them. 

this is Saartjie, her one cat in canada.  when my dad went to work in the mornings, she would get the cats with her in bed, one cat in each arm. then they would take there morning nap. my mom loved sleeping in. she would sleep until 11h45, get up, shower and get dressed, just in time before my dad arrived at home for lunch at 12. then she would tell him what she was busy with 'the whole morning'... acting as if she got up with him. 

she was fond of peace and home.... when i was 7 years old, we lived in piketberg. at the annual show that year, she gave me R2 to buy something with and i remember taking all my money to buy her a plant like this, because i knew how much she loved them... 

she was very curious. she could not wait for her birthday/xmas/mother's day..she wanted to know beforehand what gift she was getting... so curious...and made that we had to hide her gifts... her wedding ring got stolen and on this day (above photo), my dad gave her a new wedding ring and went on his knee and ask her to marry him again. they were such an inspiration for the 3 of us... 

 she was excellent with sleeping in, and cuddling... this is Trompie, her other sleeping partner. 

'daffie-duck' my mom's nickname was daffie-duck, her christian names johanna helena elizabeth, but every one called her daphne...yes, go figure. hehe.. 

 she was involved. she was involved/part of every child/grandchild's birthday party, any family celebration and was usually the middle of attention or more laughter as she would make jokes. always trying to be funny. 

these are called 'daphne-dils'.  in 1995 my mom got very ill and was diagnosed with myelodysplasic syndrome, a type of leukemia. right in the beginning when we did not know why she was so ill, i stayed with her overnight and on my return home, one of these beautiful daffodils was lying on my pillow with a little note from my brother saying: 'these are 'daphne-dills', but this one is for you. thank you for staying with mom'. 

my mom had a bone-marrow transplant and lived another 15 years! she celebrated all 3 her children's 21st birthdays, all 3 her children's weddings, the birth of 2 of her 6 grandchildren and life in-between all that celebrations. blessed, blessed, blessed to have had her for another 15 years!  

 she was an amazing granny. here she is sitting with morgan, whom she looked after for the first 2 years of his life. he is the only grandchild who would really 'remember' her and her funny ways... 

she was an amazing mom
she was not the easiest of people to lived with, but despite that, she was an amazing mom! 

 she loved to make fire... she was fiesty and all fire(d) up to fight for what she wanted or believed in... 

 she was funny...and would almost always pull a face when we took photos. 

she was a proud grand mom...

doing laundry was like a meditation... she did laundry  worked quite on her nerves when she was at my house and i had loads of laundry...hehe... i used to giggle when she got all upset that i don't do laundry every single day.. 

she was a very involved mom... she was always at our sport practices... you could say a true 'soccer mom'. i appreciate that of her... she taught me what it means to support your children no matter what. 

i love her...this face, this smile, the wrinkles, the tiny eyes...  i love her! 

always game for sports... if anyone would ask: 'who wants to join me in 30 seconds" (or any game for that matter), she will be first...

she loved to write letters... (and smoke). she used to write postcards and letters to us every 2 weeks/month and send packages with too big shoes in for the kids...or paper cut - outs of interesting newspaper articles that we would want to read... i miss that! post with her handwriting on it... i miss that. 

she loved surprises, birthday cakes, candles... she loved life! this photo was taken with her last birthday on earth... 63 candles on a 'melktert'... 

happy birthday mom. we miss you. xx

1 comment:

  1. This is so very beautiful, my friend. So beautiful.