Mom would have turned eighty-seven today. I've missed her every day these past thirteen months since she died. I've missed her since Calvin was about two or three when she began forgetting that I have a son. But I'm grateful she met my boy and thankful that I have memories of them together. I used to cry into the phone expressing to her the grief I felt over the loss of having a severely disabled, chronically ill child. Her response to me was always the same. In her soft, loving voice, she'd say, "No one but you can know how hard it is." It made me think how difficult raising us six kids must have been, and I wonder who she told. I wonder who comforted her besides, perhaps, my father. My sense, my fear, is that she did it alone. That's how strong she was.

I think of her now as one of those twinkling starts out there, her silvery hair shining amid an infinite sky. Happy birthday, Mom. I'll love and miss you until the day I die.


  1. How deeply lovely and dear that image is, and how profound your wondering
    and missing. My father loved his very disabled granddaughter in a way her own father never has, and I will miss him forever.

  2. This is the sweetest post that also hit me hard. It's what your mother told you -- her recognition of what "it" all is and means. Thank you for sharing a bit of her with us. She is beautiful, as is her daughter. And that photo -- so beautiful.

  3. They have the understanding to what is the most important step to accomplishment by determining who will be on their team. safety first