April 04, 2013

Thinking about My Mother: 13 years later

My mother died 13 years ago, tomorrow.
Today I am writing about my mother. This is an homage to the greatest woman I know.

Sept 9, 1923 – April 5 2000

I did not want to say “thinking about my mother” because I do that every single day. I think about her, feel her, hear her voice; she is so ingrained in who I am. I am convinced that she always had a plan for me, both spoken and unspoken, and it’s her essence and light that has given me the tools to move forward each and every day since the event of my greatest heartbreak over 17 years ago. She was my anchor.

And I built upon the heartbreak and learned, and with the guidance she nurtured me with, I believe she tried to prepare me for the day she would no longer be alive.
We went through a lot; some very dark and bad days together, but the vast majority were bright and loving and inspiring. I remember a happy, loving childhood in a home full of love and support. My mother started teaching me bookkeeping when I was 10 so I would understand business and ‘always have an employable skill’!  -- I am so grateful that I had my mother. She taught me so many important things, like;
  • You can do anything!
  • Treat people the way you want to be treated
  • The truth is much easier to remember than a lie
  • If you make a mistake, own up to it, with no excuses.
  • Always be self-sufficient. Know how to cook, clean, sew, research, and NEVER depend on someone else to provide these basic life skills for you. It is ok to share with others and rely on them for various things, but NEVER let someone ELSE tell YOU what you need, want, should buy, must have….  You have a brain; use it!
  • Believe in justice and equality. Fight for what you believe in. Do not stand idly by if someone needs help and you are able to help them. Trust your gut and don’t’ wait for ‘someone else’ to make the first move.
  • Be a leader, not a follower
  • Appreciate life. Appreciate beauty. Appreciate all that is good in your life.
  • Don’t hold grudges.  If you can’t let go, then back away and don’t look back. You are only hurting yourself if you hold onto this negative energy.
  • Hug! A lot
  • There is no such thing as saying ‘I love you’ too much. (As long as you mean it).
  • Pick your battles; ask yourself, “Self, is this REALLY important?” or “Self, if this was your last day on earth, is THIS how you want to be spending/wasting it?”
  • Help those who are less fortunate than you.  Even if you only have 10 in your wallet, someone else has less.

I miss how much she loved her grandchildren. How she would ‘sneak’ Aero bars into the house and share them with kids. She forgot to check for little bits of melted chocolate stuck to the leather sofa where she would sit in the front room of our house. I miss the warmth of her hug and the way I would feel when I was sad or hurt and she would be there on the sofa waiting for me to nuzzle in. There was no safer or loving place in the world. I can feel my head pressing against her flesh and I could sense the love shooting out from her finger tips as she wrapped them around my head and body
Shhhh……Shhh…….  Everything will be better………Shhh………Shhhh……..
Loving and missing my mother  today and every day.


  1. This is just lovely Berti. You could not said it better and she would be so proud as we all are of you. Colleen

    1. I don't know where my reply went from yesterday... hmmm.
      Thank you for your comment Colleen - it means so much <3

  2. What a lovely tribute to your mom! I often think how blessed I am that I have had great parents. I often feel so sad when I hear or see others who weren't as fortunate. Your mom gave such great advice that will be handed down to your children and make them caring and strong. All the best to you on a reflective day.

    1. I know what you mean, Winnie. I can think of some friends who did not have the same experience as me and it makes me so sad. I see how, to this day, they are struggling with it, just as you and I are still basking in it. Thank you for your kind words. <3


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