Sunday, July 3, 2011

"What you seek, you already are."

This week marks ten years since my mother died. She was an artist, a seamstress who also designed clothing, a homemaker, and lover of God and people. At age forty-six she became a first-time parent, and like everything she did, she went at it with energy and creativity. The woman was an embodiment of the French term joie de vivre--cheerful enjoyment of life.

When I realized this would be the tenth anniversary of her passing, I thought perhaps I should do something splashy to honor her. Then I realized that, in my way, I honor her every day, by trying to live an authentic life. For me, that means gratitude, simplicity, love, and happiness.

One thing that has occurred during our year and a half (so far) struggle with my husband's illness is that I have become more comfortable with myself. This is me. My hair is turning white. I like to whistle church songs. I could stand to lose some weight. I smile a lot. I am not particularly graceful. I write (or at least, wrote) romance. I am very happy with less (stuff, money, busy-ness).

The other evening when my son gave me time off from caregiving, I went to a bookstore. Still unable to become engaged by fiction, I found myself in the self-help section. I scanned, among other titles, Deepak Chopra's The Book of Secrets. This sentence jumped off the page at me: "What you seek, you already are."

My mother was a great reader--of all kinds of things, but I especially remember her sitting with a pen for underlining and margin-writing, and one of her many books on religion and spirituality. I guess my current search should not be so surprising to me. I am finding what was there all along.

I am my mother's daughter. Lucky me.

5 comments:

  1. Sounds like my mom, Magdalena, except the age of becoming a mother. She's 74 and still zooming around like she 10 years younger--not that she looks her age to begin with. Mom always had a book she was reading and I remember seeing her studying the scriptures,(she still does) researching points, and writing in the margins.

    Sounds like you got the best qualities of your mother plus some wonderfully unique ones of your own.

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  2. Hi, Sia! Thank you for sharing about your mom. I bet she's thrilled that you are a writer.

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  3. Mothers, whether through good or bad influence, shape who we become, and they are with us long after they are gone. I am lucky to still have both my grandmothers and my mother, and the last couple of years especially, they have been invaluable as life has gotten difficult.

    I'm so glad you have a positive legacy left by your mother. It's something that can never be lost.

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  4. Since I too was honored to be mothered by your mother, I often try to be more like her. She gave me the love of being splashy. She would have been very proud of you. I see her in you each time we are together. Part of being true to yourself is honoring the parts of you that come from someone else.

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  5. Thank you, Cherie and Garden Girl. I haven't been here at the blog for a long time, but I really appreciate what you said.

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