It is my first letter to you without you being here to actually read it. You have always been the one to tell me I should write more. How appropriate then I do just that on my first Mother’s Day without you here.
I must admit I feel you close nonetheless. That is such a comfort as Dad and I are both navigating uncharted waters without you here at the helm.
I posted an early black and white picture of you recently (reposted here below). In it you are posed and so beautiful. Until recently I had no idea it was a modeling agency’s head shot. It is stunning. I see my own eyes in yours. I am warmed by your beautiful smile and what I know must be your ruby red lips showing the whitest of teeth below your soft and flawless cheeks. Your dark hair compliments what appears to be a dark satin embroidered dress.
This is a picture that is all too familiar to me. I can’t remember not seeing it on Dad’s desk actually. Yet it is as if I am really seeing it for the first time. Your intense yet sincere youthful gaze expresses your beauty so perfectly. I am glad for the opportunity to always remember you this way rather than the view of your last days here with us as your health and body failed you. I will file that image away to only be recalled when absolutely necessary. I’m sure that is preferable to you as well.
The last months for you were unexplainable and an unsolved mystery in my view. The medical professionals were hard pressed to offer relief. To that end I am grateful you are at peace and no longer struggling to solve or make sense of the conditions of aging and failures set upon you.
Like a child with her teddy bear, I now cling tightly to all you have given me. The ability to be independent and loving are the most formidable. While I will never be the great cook and well attired package you presented to the world, I can prepare a decent meal, maintain a garden to some extent and coordinate my own style when necessary, all thanks to you Mom. More importantly, I have a bit of your insight which is priceless. To be able to hear what hasn’t actually been said and see what has not yet revealed itself is golden.
Dad has been coming to dinner on Sunday nights. Like your own father was known to do, he always claims it to be delicious.
So thank you Mom. Whether near or far, here or there, I am so proud and grateful and always happy to call you Mom. As much as I miss you, these things will never leave me.
I love that and I love you. Happy Mother’s Day.
My Mother, Francine Lockett, aka “Frankly Francine”