A birthday, a passing and finally, a sale.

#1. Today’s my Mom’s birthday.ย 

For the newcomers, my mom passed away last March so we are still traveling through our year of firsts. This is the last first. She passed away right after her birthday.

While our year of firsts is coming to a close, the memories most certainly aren’t.

My sweet mom. How I miss her friendly clutter on her counter tops, warm lingering hugs and hesitant, pleasant phonecalls, always wondering if she caught me at a bad time.ย  Her voice is still on her answering machine, so we can ‘hear’ her anytime. And my sis reports, many hangups come through.

She always had goodies on her kitchen table. Like, always. ๐Ÿ™‚ I remember when I was dieting, I avoided going there for a short spell because of all those chocolates sitting in the wide open spaces just free for the taking!ย 

Oh.. loads of memories to smile at.

I took a full photo shoot of her home shortly after her passing. As hard as it was to look at the photos tonight, it was also heartwarming. I’m so glad I have them. I’ll be making a private family video from them and I think it’s time to start that project at long last.

But there was a reason I was holding off from making it. I was waiting for…

#2. Her house to be sold.

And it finally has. Just. In a few days I’ll be emptying all my staging efforts and filtering them back into my own home decor once again.

Funky junk in my mom’s house. Imagine. ๐Ÿ™‚


Would you like a peek one last time at her staged home?ย 

It’s HERE in magazine format.

ย All at once. A birthday, a passing and finally, a sale.

Well, I’m going to do my best to bring my son continuedย 

Memories of my Mom

(you need to go get a coffee or something… this is endless!)

My Mom loved coming to our farm (the house before the one I’m in now) for entire weekends. It was a 45 min drive between us, so for her, it was better to come on Friday and leave on Sunday. She started doing this when my son was a newborn, so we had lots of girlie/baby weekends. She wanted to be a grandma while I tended to the yard or had a good nap.

As my son grew, her visits didn’t diminish. She loved to walk the veranda, or sit on the massive swing I had built by a real carpenter. It was the kind that reached high into the sky and had the longest back and forth sway you could imagine.

One of her very favorite things to do was sit on the edge of the sandbox and dig dig dig and play play play with my boy. The sandbox was HUGE so there was lots of digging and finding lost treasures to be had. And she always welcomed a fresh cup of coffee by her side. We did coffee together quite nicely.

Something that really struck her fancy? The chickens. Cody would walk right up to them and pick them up like they were cats. She took picture after picture of this and proudly displayed them to anyone that she came in contact with.

When Cody got his first bike, she was there on the road, watching him make those training wheels work as hard as they possibly could. She loved our quiet country road with the massive willow leaning completely over the works.ย 

And she was creative. She liked to walk the 5 acres with Cody and look for moss on trees. MOSS ON TREES. Honestly, she could make a game out of completely nothing, she was just that awesome. I have a few pictures somewhere of them moss hunting to prove it. ๐Ÿ™‚

I got closer to her during these times than when I lived with her! And she told me the same thing one day… “You know, I really love coming here. I feel so much closer to you now than I think I ever have. These weekends? They’re GOOD for us!” I’m so on board with that, mom.

Oh, and we took her camping with us! She’d wear the biggest hat, longest pants and warmest socks to the beach. AND sat in the shade. Luckily it was easy to make sand castles under the trees too so those two got the shade, I got the sun and we were a happy bunch.

And hey, it wasn’t all about daughter grandson time when she came along. She made friends with a lovely lady that camped there with her daughter as well. I mean, come on. They’re holding hands!

By the way, that lady on the right, one time she watched me find 7 4 leaf clovers all in one sitting and she nearly fainted. She told me without question incredible things would happen for me and the way she said it startled me into believing it! I was just needing to hear it at the time because of the troubles I had in my personal life, so she really filled some empty spots for all of us. Great memory!

ย When Cody had just learned to walk, he was a crazy boy at the campground. He’d dart towards whatever he shouldn’t. So mom and I came up with a grand plan to remove his shoes and socks so the rocks would slow him down. Worked like a charm. ๐Ÿ™‚

And then, things progressed. Driving became difficult for her so our weekends were scattered moreso. I actually ended up moving closer to her after my divorce, so we started going to her place instead. We even stayed the night on occasion. Boy, was she a night owl in her own home! We’d head for bed and she’d be loading the dishwasher or starting a load of laundry well into the wee hours. And then fall asleep on her recliner of course. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’d gently scold her and tell her to hit the hay already. And she listened too! I think she liked it when there was someone to guide her around. I kinda know how she feels now. I wish for that too at times.

Yup. Us single chicks. Aren’t we hip, eh mom? ๐Ÿ™‚

A year before she passed, I saw her getting weaker. So I upped the ante on our visits. Rather than Cody going to sports or swimming lessons, we took the year off and went swimming at her condo instead once a week. Her amazing condo pool like no other. It was always empty, spotless and the warmest dip we’ve ever had. Not to mention the heated tile floors in the changing rooms! Boy we were spoiled in the best way possible. Mom loved it when we came and used ‘her’ pool.ย 

Oh. And we went on Thursdays so we could get her hooked on Survivor with us. We’d pick up a pizza, swim, then had coffee and yelped at how silly those challenges were. During the commercials? I’d get up and stage stuff for her. By the time we left, she had a new home. ๐Ÿ™‚

Each time we swam, I looked at her with that longing of never wanting the moment of her company to end.

But… that wasn’t to be. Life pulls ahead and you’re left trying to figure it all out. One day at a time.

I admit, I muddle alot. I flip flop, I criss cross, I give up, I go full tilt. I have no idea what I’m doing most of the time yet I know exactly what I’m up to. Nothing and everything makes sense. In other words? We wing life day by day and attempt to rejoice with what we have and where we’re at.

Boy I miss my best friend and biggest fan. But we will be ok.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

ย Dear Mom,

I know you don’t want us to be sad. For the most part, you’d be really proud of us! We stay busy, happy and productive, which is what you would have adored. You never wanted us to hurt.

But we don’t hurt in a bad way. It’s a comfort knowing you are in Good Hands. What more could we ask for?

Do they celebrate birthdays in Heaven? I guess we’ll have to find out for ourselves. Until then, whatever it is you do up there, I know you’re in good company.ย 

I was just thinking today that you’re finally with your own dad you lost when you were a young girl. And YOUR mom! And my Dad. ๐Ÿ™‚ Oh but you must be having the grandest of times!

To sum up our year of firsts without you? I won’t lie. It was painful. But I think we handled it with style. We had friends that came to our rescue when needed, and our family connected. Christmas in your home one last time was wild!

Anyway, I just called your phone to wish you a Happy Birthday. Sorry my voice cracked abit. But I have a feeling I won’t be the only one to call today.

Mom, I sure hope you don’t mind me sharing some of this on my blog. Others are hurting for their loved ones that have passed on as well. I just wanted to share how I cope in order to help someone else in a similar place.ย 

Happy Birthday! And thanks for nudging God into finding that special buyer for your home when W asked you to help. You’ve always been abit of a party planner type. ๐Ÿ™‚

I love you!

If you have a few prayers to spare, our family could use them today and in the next couple weeks.

ย ย 


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Categories: Family

87 thoughts on “A birthday, a passing and finally, a sale.

  1. Donna, what a beautiful trip down memory lane and tribute to your mom. What a legacy she left you….and now as you empty her home and bring some of her things to mix in with yours, I know that you will find the perfect spot to showcase those things that mean so much…and you know what? They will definitely mix well with your style! She had a beautiful home. Put a few things of hers in each room…fill those spaces with memories….I believe that they will bring comfort and inspiration in the process. I know that she is smiling down on you and your son with the biggest smile….and telling everyone that she is so proud of you! How could she not be. You have been strong and carried on. You’ve challenged yourself, grown into a success business woman and been such an inspiration to so many.

    I understand the pain of losing a beloved parent. I lost my Daddy 11 years ago last month….and I still miss him so much. My memories with him brings warmth to my heart and somehow helps me to stay the course. One day we will see them again….oh what a glorious day.

    May GOD bring you peace and comfort especially today as you remember your sweet and precious mom. Now you and Cody give each other a big hug!

  2. Dear Donna ~ What a loving tribute to your Mom. She sounds like a wonderful, loving person, and she passed those qualities down to you and her grandson.

    Your staging of her home was just lovely, and I’m glad someone has bought it.

    The statement that really touched me in this post was this:

    “We wing life day by day and attempt to rejoice with what we have and where we’re at.”

    Love and hugs to you dear heart.


  3. I love your mom & I never met her. What a wonderful tribute to her. I, too, have a daughter who gave me a wonderful g’son plus twin girls & I can tell you from personal experience that you gave her the most incredible gift. A prayer goes out to you for peace & comfort as you go through the task of clearing out her home. Hope you saved the hat — you, too, may want to wear it someday while you watch your g’children. Peace, Jan

  4. Loved this conversation Donna! You did a beautiful job staging her home and now someone new will be residing there. How special is that? Love the magazine you made up showing her house…beautiful!!!
    My dad passed 25 years ago and I am still astounded he is not here!!! I know he is having the time of his life right now…celebrating with family and friends in Heaven! One day I will be partying with him!
    What fun we all will have…staging and creating in the best place ever!! Wowzers!
    Hugging you

  5. Oh, this is just beautiful! I am sitting here with tears in my eyes. I can’t believe it has been a year since she passed. I remember when you posted about it and my heart just broke for you. When my aunt passed away recently, her daughter posted a poem about found pennies being pennies from loved ones in heaven. They send them to you to let you know they are thinking of you. Just last night I found one, of all places, in the sink while doing dishes. I was just wondering if my mom was thinking of me a little bit before. I know she is watching over you and smiling. Proud of everything you have become besides the curve balls life has thrown at you. A big hug to you my friend!

  6. Just a beautiful post about your Mom, Donna. Hugs for you today on her birthday and prayers as you go about the cleaning and sale of her home.

  7. Wow-what a way to start my morning-what a special bond you had with your mom-one that will never be forgotten-cherished memories for you and your son-be brave-be strong-smile

  8. Hello Donna…thinking of your and your sweet mom today…I am so touched by this post I can barely see through the tears. Such beautiful memories and such a sweet reminder to cherish the time we have with those we love. I will be praying for your and your family…praying for peace and joy and maybe even a little “peek” into Heaven at the eternal celebration she is enjoying ๐Ÿ™‚ Blessings, Laurel

  9. Now that my coffee cup is filled with tears… What a beautiful tribute to your Mom. You are so lucky to have so many shared memories between your Son, your Mother, and yourself. The first year is the hardest, but the memories are always there, waiting for you to reach for them. Hugs and prayers for you my friend – and a refill on my coffee please!

  10. my thoughts are with you. my father passed away on the 22nd of this month and his birthday was yesturday and we too are coming up on his 1 year anniversary of his passing. oh its tough! i gave birth to my 3rd little one just 13 days before he suddenly passed away. i know how it feels and hurt daily because of it.

  11. Oh Donna, I can’t see for the tears. My heart and prayers are with you and your family! I thank God everyday that I still have my mom and dad and I selfishly ask Him to allow me to have them here for many, many more! Thank you for so sweetly sharing your heart, introducing us to your mom and for such a lovely tribute to her. I’m sure she would be so proud!

  12. What a sweet tribute to your mom Donna, she sounds like she was a very special person. How nice that you and your son were able to spend so much time with her and create so many wonderful memories. Best wishes โ™ฅ

  13. Beautiful post and tribute to your mom. Having been through this I will tell you that now that the first year of “firsts” has passed, the pain and grief eases tremendously but you always miss them. My son was younger than yours when my mom passed away and I wanted to keep her memory alive for him too. Writing memories down as you have, talking about her, showing pictures and homemade videos has worked. My son has kept many of his memories or at least he has memories of the stories, pictures and videos. We were so lucky to have had the moms we have.

  14. Donna,

    This is beautiful. I LOVE that you have left her voice on the answering machine. And, that you call ‘her’.

    To have memories like these to share with your son must fill your heart to overflowing. You are blessed beyond belief to have a mother to have called your friend. And your son, altho, it may be hard for him to understand the loss, was incredibly blessed to have a grandma!!!!

    I’ll be thinking about you today!!!


  15. Such a beautiful tribute to your Mom! Reading it has made me cry . . . good tears though. First thing this morning, as soon as I know she’s awake, I’m calling my Mom. Just to chat, and we’ll ramble, and I’ll make sure to tell her I love her and miss her. BIG hugs to you! And thank you — thank you for sharing your beautiful memories and your big heart.

  16. Now thats a life well-lived Donna!
    What a beautiful relationship you and your son had with your sweet Momma…thank you for sharing these dear memories with us…I need a kleenex, but Im so happy to have heard what a dear Momma you had and that she is in the most joy-filled place ever with Him!!
    Ill be remembering you and your family and lifting you up in prayer…
    Blessings sweet Donna and Im so glad her house sold…you staged it so beautifully!!
    Love and hugs to you today dear friend xo

    All my love,
    Deborah xoxoxoxoxo

  17. Hi Donna,
    I have been following your blog for a while now and I love it. Although I have not commented before, I assure you I love your many ideas and your sense of style.

    I love that your mom could “hunt for moss.” I lost my mom 12 years ago and so I felt compelled to write you. I wanted to let you know my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I remember the end of the first year I felt like things should be better but apparently my grief followed a different timeline than the one I assigned it. I just wanted you to know that even though a year of firsts has passed it doesn’t necessarily mean you no longer feel like you’ve been punched in the stomach.

    My grandmother used to tell my mom and my mom told me “you never really grow up until your mother dies.” Sometimes growing up is hard but I am so happy you have such fond memories of her and loving people to share them with!!

    Thanks so much for your blog!


  18. What a beautiful post! You, your Mom and your son were so lucky to have spent so much time together. Congratulations on selling her house. It was fun to see the pictures. It will be my Mom’s birthday on Monday. This will be the 6th one since she passed. All of them are tough, no matter how much time has passed…

    Thanks for sharing. You brightened my day.


  19. Donna,
    What a beautiful post…I have tears in my eyes. It has been 7 yrs since I lost my own Mom and I have to say the first year is the hardest. Then about 5 yrs it got a bit easier. I still have days I miss her so much, but my memories will always keep her alive as will yours.
    Big hugs,

  20. I am so thankful that you have so many treasured memories Donna! They will get you through and bring you comfort down through the years…thanks for sharing them with us! Prayers from Kansas!

  21. Beautiful post. My Dad is ill and reading your post well.. Im having a bit of a melted down. Thank you for the reminder of how preciouse life is and to enjoy the ones we love. Ill try harder after reading your post.

  22. ((((( hug ))))) I feel you new friend. I am sure she didn’t mind you sharing your happys and your sads with us today. Embrace the day and your beautiful memories … the are both so precious!

  23. Donna,

    I’m so glad I found you on Facebook! What a wonderful story to read first thing in the morning… with my cup of coffee, as you suggested. I’m just past the sixteenth year of my folks’ passing… I truly know how you feel. Have a wonderful weekend, my friend, and keep up the great writing!

  24. Through you, Donna, your Mom’s life continues to make an impact on others. I’m left with the urgency to call my own mom today…to leach everything I can out of our relationship… the good times,the difficult times…the times she still runs her fingers through my hair. My mom, Gladys, would have loved yours…as she was an antique dealer for years…now, her home is a sanctuary of her favorites that she held on to. I cannot imagine how you must have felt when you took the pictures of her home shortly after her not being there…but it does help me to know…I need to be prepared to do the same..so I too can preserve the essence…of Mom. thank you…

  25. It sounds like your Mom was a wonderful lady and I am sure she is ‘smiling’ down on you and all of your accomplishments. Sending my thoughts and prayers to you and your son for the sometimes challenging moments of life.

  26. Well I’m sure you know my tears are streaming. You know I lost my mom in Dec. 2009? It is still so hard. But I love how you celebrate your mom and talk about the good memories. We do too. It helps to get through. And girl that first year is so tough. I don’t really know when it gets better, but I’m sure it will come. I love how you did this tribute post. I’m thinking of you today.
    Blessings and Happy Birthday to her ๐Ÿ™‚
    Becky C

  27. I need to go call some family members right about now…to let them know how special they are and to create another conversation, another moment, another memory while we can. And I will rejoice in the tears that come…they represent the strong emotions we feel and our ability to express them. Big hugs to you, my friend.

  28. Donna,
    This was truly beautiful. I can’t see through the tears to type ๐Ÿ™‚ To have had this kind of relationship with you mother must have been amazing. She seems like a wonderful mother and as the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. You seem like a remarkable person heart and soul. Thank you for your thoughts and memories.

  29. Congrats on the sale of your Moms home. My mother passed after a battle with cancer 3 years ago and it is still hard on me so I could not read the letter to your mother. I am sure it was lovely but I am at work and decided it was best not to start crying at my computer. Have a wonderful weekend Donna. Much love.

  30. My heart is breaking for you right now as I sit here in tears reading this.

    I just went through the anniversary of my Mom’s passing Feb 22nd and thinking to myself we made it. The firsts are always the hardest but we all survived them and we have some wonderful lifetime memories to cherish that keep us going.

    Believe your Mom is guiding you and watching over you and Cody. You have had some wonderful and deserving things come your way this past year and I truly believe Mom’s powers are stronger in heaven then below.

    Thinking of you today and always my friend… I am so proud of you for all you do and how you have handled it all with grace and I am sure your Mom is so proud too.

    Hang in there sweetie, things will get easier.

    Big Hugs to you and Cody… xo


  31. Donna
    Your Mom sounds like a wonderful lady, a wonderful mom and a wonderful grandma. Thank you for sharing her with us. I know you are right, she is having a grand time in heaven. My prayers are with you and your family as I know you miss her so much.

  32. Ah, there is NEVER a good day to lose a loved one. I sometimes think of it like this: You see a beautiful tapestry with many colors and patterns and then a color is removed. The tapestry is still beautiful, others remark on its beauty, but they didn’t know it with the added color, what it added to the patterns. We can only try to give a flimsy effort to explain how much richer it was with the other color. Then, I wonder what I have missed in the colors that have been removed before I saw the tapestry. My mother has been gone for several years, but I still “see” her occasionaly (not in the occult-type way), but in the things I do, a glimpse in the mirror, a surprise recipe that I find and know that she is cheering me on.

  33. I am a lurker, but I had to comment on this post. Last year, I lost three of my four grandparents within a 6 month time span. It was all a shock, as they had generally been in good health (all things considered) at the beginning of the year,and I was very close to each and every one of them. My paternal grandmother, she was the first to go. She had a total knee replacement that she never woke up from. it was the most devastating loss I have experienced to date, and my mind and body are still trying to comprehend her absence. My comfort is in knowing that heaven has gained a true angel, who loved the Lord more than anything in the world.

    Personally, I have never been emotionally close to my own mother. She suffers from some mental health issues that have affected her ability to bond with me, her only daughter. Reading this post, I find myself thinking of how fortunate you were to have these precious moments with your mother. Mine lives about 2 minutes from me, and she never takes time to spend with me, my husband and two young children. You were seriously blessed. But your post has also made me feel that I shouldn’t give up completely on my mother, and maybe work harder at building a solid relationship with her, before it is too late.

    Thank you for being so open and genuine. It was a great help.

  34. What a wonderful tribute to your mom. I loved reading about your cherished memories, although my heart was breaking for you by the end of your post. Big hugs to you and Cody, and I’ll keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

  35. Thanks for your post. I think I had some tears saved up…and I let myself miss my mom some more. It’s been 23 years now. I was 40…that year was a doozie! I could talk to her like no one else. What a blessing to have a mom like that…not everyone does.

  36. Thanks so much everyone. I started replying to your comments and well, I need to stop for now. This is hard. Just know, how much I’m enjoying your feedback and so glad this post inspired some of you to ‘make those connections.’


  37. donna the 1st year really is the hardest but it does get easier. gosh has it been a year wow time flies. your mom must be in heaven ๐Ÿ˜‰ at you now. she sounds like a great lady and a wonderful inspiration for you and your son.HUGS

  38. What a lovely tribute to your Mom! Some warm thoughts and prayers your way to guide you through a bit. A Mom like yours is a precious gift – enjoy her memory every day! And what a great legacy for your sweet son!!

  39. What a beautiful tribute. I also had avery close relationship wiyh my Mom and have been devastated since she passed in december 2008. We spent many weekends, vacations and Target shopping trips together, as well as talking on the phone each day. My husband would always say,”Why don’t we bring your Mom, too?! Your words,” I looked at her with that longing of never wanting the moment of her company to end.” were the ones to make my tears spiull down my face, as I remember feeling that way, too. She had been through 2 cancers and heart surgery the last 3 years, and although she was strong and NEVER complained, I knew that time with her was becoming more and more precious. Thank you for putting in words the way that I still feel.

  40. Donna, that is a lovely post about your Mom. My daughter is only 13, but my best friend and I talk about how we can’t wait to be Grandmothers. ( well, we can, but…)

    I hope I’m as wonderful a Grandmother as your Mom was.

  41. Thanks so much for sharing Donna! What a great tribute to your mother. I hope time continues to heal your wounds. I too moved closer to my parents and I just adore them. I wouldn’t have missed this time together for anything. Your mother sounds like a great lady and I’m so sorry for your loss.

  42. Donna… this is such a beautiful tribute and letter to your mom… you have such a wonderful outlook on life and I know others are relating and healing because of all that you share!

    In my thoughts….

  43. thank you so much for sharing this beautiful tribute to your mother…
    my heart was breaking as i started reading this and is breaking as i am typing… my family just went through 2 deaths of family members just in this past feb. within 6 days of each other….. we had just been home two days from being at my uncle’s memorial service when i got one of the worst calls i could have ever imagine about my sweet nephew who had just turned 20 on jan.31,2011 who i also practically helped raise when he was little… i never knew i could hurt so much….

    i do pray that the Lord will give you and your family comfort and everything you need for today and for the days ahead…

    you have encouraged me in how you are coping and i appreciate it very much…

    please, no worries, about trying to respond to comments on here….i know it must be very hard, and you have already expressed you appreciation and you are very welcomed…

    thank you again for sharing…



  44. my heart is with you while you ‘feel’ the results of this post! I too lost my mom just a few months ago and there is nothing like that relationship. It leaves quite the void that cannot be filled in any other way. You brought some tears but also smiles. We GET to have wonderful memories and reminders of our moms as we go about moving forward. What a gift! Thanks so much for sharing and opening…hope this helps as you move ahead to adventures ahead – you mom would be SO PROUD! xxoo

  45. Dear Donna, thankyou for sharing that beautiful post with us…I had trouble reading to the end only because the words went blurry through my wet eyes…

    I am lucky enough to still have both of my parents with me, but my husband has lost both of his, in the last 3 years – in fact 22nd March is the second anniversary of his Dad’s death. We miss them dearly, I was very close to them both, in a different way to my own parents but very very special in its own way. I am particularly sad that my kids only had a few short years with their Grandma and Grandad…my son had only just turned 1 when Grandma died. We talk about them all the time to make sure they are always part of our family and the kids remember.

    You have reminded me to appreciate my own Mum more…she is the only one I will ever have, and isn’t quite the Mum that I feel I need, and I admit that I have struggled with that for a long time. At almost 40 I am slowly accepting that she shows her love for me not with hugs, phone calls, or supportive words, but by doing my dishes, ironing and gardening! Last time I told her I loved her, she said ‘thanks’. Oops I really feel like crying now ๐Ÿ™

    take care

    xx Karen

  46. I started on this post this morning, and then decided to “save it” for later because I had a bunch of appointments and I couldn’t really read this with full concentration…when you said, get a cup of coffee, I knew I would need to come back later. What I want to say is that you are lucky you had your mom invested in your life and you in hers, until her last breath. It is such a gift to have a bond like that. xxoo

  47. So beautiful Donna. You have such a wonderful way to bring us into your life in a way that we do not feel like we are prying, just sharing. Happy Birthday to your Mom, with all your accomplishments, I am sure she is quite proud.

    Take care,

  48. Oh, Donna, the lessons you teach my friend. I feel like I really know your Mom. You’ve described her in such detail over all this time. I thought her birthday was coming up and I thought about how you’d handle that. I see you’ve done it in your own special way and I just know that your Mom is smiling down on you saying “Good job, my darling daughter”. You have been in my thoughts and you will remain there. Wonderful tribute. Did you feel that hug I just gave you?

  49. donna, thanks for sharing your heart, though it may have been difficult so that someone else could be comforted by your words.
    btw..i love your funky junkified staging at your mom’s. i’m sure that’s why it sold!
    have a great weekend,

  50. Hi Donna – I can see here you have a mountain of people who have all commented on your wonderful tribute to your Mum – I would just like to add one more. I also went through a year of “firsts” after my Mum passed away in April 2008. It was the hardest year of my life. Today, almost 3 years on it is still not easy – I long to wrap my arms around her tiny shoulders and hear her voice again but sadly, I know that is not going to happen. The emptiness I feel is hard to explain – it’s like one of my fingers has been cut off and when I look at my hand all I can see is a space where it used to be. (Strange analogy I know!!??) The thing that gives me most comfort is the thought that one day I might meet up with her again. I know she is waiting at Rainbow Bridge (that magical place somewhere up THERE!) and when it is my turn I will walk across it with her. Stay strong….. ;)Sharyne

  51. What a precious tribute to your Mom. I cried, but joyful tears as I know that she is rejoicing with Jesus.

    That first year is a hard one….and Donna, it’s been 23 since my dad died in a work accident, I still miss his laugh, his voice and his big bear hugs. My last two babies never got to meet him, but my first three remember him well.

    I am so glad that you took those photos of your mom’s home. Those memories are precious…how many times did you smell her scent as you walked into her home? How wise you where to know when when to ramp up those visits.

    Rejoice in the knowledge that your son will always have those sweet memories of her, through photos and through your words.

    Thank you for sharing this part of your journey, it offers us the opportunity to pray for you and your family; that to me is a true blessing.

  52. Praying the Glory light of Jesus will shine down on all your hearts and heal the hurt. Praying that Daddy God will hold you in His lap and embrace you when you are sad and missing her. Praying the Holy Spirit will bring to your memory many happy memories of your Mom that will help you to smile again in remembrance of her beautiful life. May you all be blessed with comfort, peace, healing and especially a smile in your hearts.

  53. Thank you for letting us into your heart! I know it’s hard but also healing to write about your mom publicly. I lost my dad 2 1/2 years ago and understand how important the memories are. How wonderful and intuitive you were to realize you needed to make the time for them.
    I’m praying for His strength to take you through the rough times and His shoulders to lean on when you need it. His promise of seeing our loved ones in Heaven again is so comforting even though we ache.
    Blessings to you and Cody for sharing this.

  54. Donna~
    a precious testimony you’ve shared with us all. I am praying for God’s peace for you and Cody and your whole family during this the final days of the year of firsts!
    I wish I could say it gets easier– but, you’ll continue to miss her when Cody graduates, and gets married and has kids of his own… I know.

    But God comforts us then too!
    Bless you for sharing– I loved it. You made me think of my Mom.
    your bloggy friend, Pat

  55. This is a truly beautiful post Donna ~ a true testimonial. I love the memories you shared with us and it must have been therapeutic for you to write it all down… It was 10 years in Jan since my Dad passed and not a day goes by that I do not think about him ~ miss him. There used to be a website called letters to heaven where you could write to your loved one and hit send. They said the letters would not be read just disappear into cyberspace ~ I did not care ~ I was planning my wedding and had so many things to share with him. You see he waited so long to walk me down the aisle but God took him from me before that happened. Some days it still feels like yesterday… So thanks you again for sharing this Donna and hugs to you sweetie. xo

  56. Thanks, I needed this. Close to 4 years for my sibs and I marking our parents journey to their final home. We are actually spending the day together tomorrow to “finally” finish up a bit of family business. (we all inherited the fine art of procrastination…maybe a touch of denial) Take care!!

  57. Tears for your loss and the most beautiful tribute of a Mom I’ve ever heard. Loosing my Mother when I was 19 didn’t give me time to make the memories I so wish were here for me now. I can only try to make them with my 3 daughters, son and grandchildren so that they will have them when I am gone. Thank you so much for sharing such a personal time of grief with us. I know the pain never goes away completely but special moments of her sneak in and help that pain so that is is not as great as the newness of loosing her. And I thank you for the precious memories that were brought to mind of my own Mother after living 40 years without her. May we all be blessed with beautiful and loving memories of our Mothers and pay a special tribute to them this Mothers Day.

  58. Such a lovely post. Your mother sounded to be a woman of warmth and fun. Thank you so much for sharing. It helps those of us who have lost loved ones to know that other understand our lost feelings.

  59. I love what you wrote and shared with us. She sounds like such a wonderful woman that I’m sure all of your readers wish we had met! I lost my dad several years ago and understand what it’s like. So wonderful that you have such great memories. Peace and love to you & your family.

  60. Donna, This is such a sweet tribute to your mom it brought an onslaught of tears. I have been where you are right now and remember the first year without my mom. My heart goes out to you and I thank you for sharing your memories with us.

  61. Oh Sweetie this so touched my heart reading this post and it was absolutely beautiful!! I’m just now starting my first year without Dad and reading all this helped me. I know that your Mom is just smiling down on you and thinking how very proud she is of you.

    Big hugs and thank you for sharing this beautiful tribute to your Mom.

  62. Donna, I almost didn’t comment because you have so many, but I just could not pass up the opportunity to thank you for this wonderful post. That year of firsts is the hardest…my family went through it too…my mom’s been gone 3 years and I think of her daily…I think your mom would love the fact that you have such sweet memories of her.

  63. Sigh. I’m so very sorry for your loss Sweet One.

    My mom left us 5 years ago (in December). She was only 65 and it was sudden.
    There is not a day that goes by that I don’t miss her…the world isn’t the same without your mom in it. It’s a bit more difficult to navigate your moments…love to you and prayers…
    When first grieving my mom the most important thing I learned was to lean into the grief. Just last week I was shopping for my daughters baby shower and w/out warning was overcome w/ a longing to share the time w/ Mom. I don’t stuff those feelings, I say a prayer, have a cry and remember…
    All Things Heart and Home

  64. Thank you for writing this beautiful tribute to your mom ๐Ÿ™‚ My mom just turned 85 on Wednesday, and she has slowed down a bit this year. My dad has too. I want to spend as much time as possible with them. This beautiful reminder just strengthens that.
    Your mom is still blessing others, right here on your post ๐Ÿ™‚

  65. Thank you for my post, I’m past my year of first and its easier but I always miss her. she lived next door and we are finally selling their house just now as my Dad was living there till last fall. My heart goes out to you and though I couldn’t read it all….I loved your post and some of the lovely comments by others. Breathe in, breathe out….

  66. HI Donna! What a wonderful post. I am so blessed to still have both of my parents. Some day I will have to go through what you are. Gods blessing on you.

  67. Your love and your sadness could be felt with those beautiful words about your Mom. I wish I had something encouraging to say. I send my prayers to you and your family. You shared a love you will never forget, a love that will always be with you ~hugs~

  68. I wonder if your mom knows my mother-in-law? We didn’t put her condo on the market the first year because it was too painful for one of my sister-in-laws. We finally sold it in February and the cash offer was made on my mother-in-laws birthday. Sounds like our two ladies could be friends in cahoots together.

  69. What a beautiful post Donna. Your mom sounds like a amazing woman and not only was she loved to dearly, she loved so deeply. I am so glad that you put this post up, I know she reads your blog and your heart. ๐Ÿ™‚ Hugs to you.

  70. Thank you! Cried while reading your post. My mother-in-law passed away Sept 12 of 2010. Seven days after her 74 birthday that happened in the ICU and was not awake. She was a wonderful woman. I miss her everyday. She was my best friend.

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