Posted by: Kathy | July 19, 2009

She Should Have Been There

Yesterday we celebrated my son’s 10th birthday. A big birthday for him, and for me too in way. It’s hard to believe that I have a son who’s 10 years old. Yesterday evening and even this morning, a thought kept running through my mind: “She should have been there”. My mom was a part of all things in the kid’s lives – when she was healthy, when she was sick, no matter what, she was there with them. As I’ve mentioned previously, my mom’s dream was to dance at her grandson’s wedding. I know she held on tightly to that dream, to hope that that dream would/could come true when she was fighting against pancreatic cancer. My son’s 10th birthday is nothing compared with a wedding, so she should be here. This is my somewhat “logical” way of thinking at times. But then I know she’s gone and won’t be attending any more birthday parties.

It the times when the family is all together, whether for something big like a birthday or holiday, something special like a trip to the zoo, or just a simple family meal that I think of my mom. Even if all the chairs are filled at the table, there’s still an empty place there, because my mom isn’t a part of whatever we’re doing. I still get upset and angry and think how she should be here. She deserves to be here. In a way, my mom was the head of the family. She organized our family parties. She cooked for the dinners and get togethers. My mom always knew what was going on and the special things that we’d all enjoy doing together, like the corn maze or the local carnival. I’m having a hard time “stepping up” and taking over this role, even though I know it’s what I should do.

I miss my mom. I miss her physical presence in my life. But even though she wasn’t with us physically yesterday, she was there in our hearts and our minds. So she was a part of my son’s birthday. And who knows, maybe she was really there in some way. At one point, when we were sitting down for dinner, the lights on the chandelier flickered. The bulbs were a little loose, but it was kind of weird the way it happened. The lights had been on for awhile and didn’t flicker at all, not until we were all together at the table where my mom should have been.

When we were leaving last night, my daughter accidentally let go of a balloon. A big #1 balloon that was part of the “10” I had set up for my son slowly floated up and out of reach. We all watched as this metallic blue balloon rose into the sky, and then into the clouds, shimmering in the evening sun. I told my daughter that it was ok, she gave a balloon to Grandmom Angel so she could be part of the birthday celebration.

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