The twists and turns…

It was Mother’s Day weekend, and a chance to just sit with it all.

The first one without her .. This is my numerous writings of this blog. It kept failing to upload , very annoying, so here I go again, as I attempt to unravel these last weeks .

It’s been a beautiful blur.. That is grace . It is “ amazing grace that saved a wretch like me.” They don’t just call it that for no reason.

It was bleated out on the bagpipes, by a lone piper , which creates a forlorn, yet exquisite tribute to Mum. He was dressed in Scottish regalia, and the birds chirped along in tandem surround sound, which was quite the accompaniment. Mum would have loved it .. She was there. I could feel it, and several others told me the same thing.

Paula noted that the birds chirped loudly all during Mum’s graveside service, then ceased as the last words were spoken . Then of course the sun also peaked out from behind the clouds, as if on cue, and shone down upon us, and warmed us.

The day had started off cloudy, and looked like potential rain, but when they carried her casket to where her body would be laid, nestled beside Dad, and Aunt Evelyn, the birds sung so loudly, I almost wanted them to turn down their song. What an absurd thought that was.

It was a choir of voices giving their thanks and praise . Mum would have sure loved that . She so enjoyed her birds, and learning all about them , setting out food for them , tending to her feeders, and photographing them.

Even in her last days at Bethany Lodge, the cd would play out birdsongs, and twitterings, and Mum would look, and listen, with such expectancy in her eyes.. Eyes that didn’t see very much, but ears that were keen to listen to all of her surroundings. She used to explain to all of us, including Dad’s nurses..” be careful what you say, he is listening. “

She listened, to music, birds, and the sound of our voices .. Our loved ones’ voice.. can there be anything more precious and personal than that?

I just listened yesterday to her and I singing” Yes..Jesus loves me” together, and I replayed it over and over.. because I miss her voice… her laughter . These priceless sounds are a comfort, and a longing.

I can’t hardly fathom that it’s been 6 weeks since you left this earth bound for your heavenly home . I have been carried and surrounded by grace and mercy .

Kathy’s daughter Brooke, has been here with me helping me to sort out, catalog, research and record Mum’s teddy bear collection. I had been dreading doing this, as I knew when I did, it would mean she was no longer here .

What I did not expect was the joy I would feel at glancing through her pages of carefully crafted notes, and data on all of her teddies. The pages are crisp, and somewhat yellowed, but her handwriting is like a hug. I can feel her all around us, cheering us on.. again.. more grace, and love.

Brooke was here setting up a website, and sharing in the discoveries we would make each and every day .

I told her a few weeks back that working with her was like working with my own daughter. It has been a deja vu experience in the highest. Who but my Lord Jesus would think of combining these worlds? It also felt like the relationship and kinship between Mum and her dear friend Paula where there too cheering us on, with smiles on their faces.

Such a sanctuary of grace . Brooke gas put in much effort, and I am so appreciative and amazed by her, as we have sat side by side at my old kitchen table, researching, and talking to “ quiet talkers” on the phone, straining to hear, and yet giggling at the absurdity of a company having a “ quiet talker,” manage the phones.. “Really?” That is who you decided would be a good representation for your company?

How many times can you ask a person to “ pump up the volume,” before your are considered rude. It felt like a Seinfeld episode , with the “ Close talker.” Remember that one? It is hysterical .

I didn’t know what I would need, what would surround me like a blanket of grace, but God knew.

He is so patient, and kind to me . I marvel at it all. Life sure takes some twists and turns, and a person has to adjust to these detours, and highways and byways, or be left in the dust.

Exhibit A.. This tree captured my attention on a walk the other day. It needed to bend around something to reach itself towards the sun, and sky. Did it get damaged in a wind storm? Was it struck by lightening? I wonder at how it took this interesting curve , and yet it kept on growing with the promise of a brighter day ..

The chirping of the birds all along my morning walks are so reminiscent of walks with Mum, and her happy sidekick, Brody .. I smile with thankfulness at the times shared, and the many conversations had.

We didn’t actually go on a bike ride this day, as when she tried to ride not with Brody in the basket, she tipped over. This did not make her happy at all. Barbara, her wonderful caregiver, and I, decided a broken hip could happen if she fell off her bike again , so a walk seemed like the calmer, and gentle way of heading off up the street.

Mum gave me a pout as if I was scolding her, and I felt like she wanted to try anyways, but knew it was best to just stand with the bike instead. It was the safer option , so she begrudgingly obliged me, and we walked all about her yard instead. She would explain about all of the flowers, trees and shrubs. Sometimes, truth be told, I tuned her out, but this knowledge appears to have sunk into my brain somehow . I’m shocked as I recall things she taught me, that I don’t remember listening to . Thank goodness for our subconscious mind that records things even when we are not paying attention.

The business bearendipity.org was born just 5 weeks ago. It is a made up word meaning” a teddy bear that enters your life quite by chance in a happy and beneficial way.”

I like made up words. These teddy bears need to be shared..

It is time for them to grace people with their comforting presence.

Touching them, and unpacking their welcome little faces has helped me to understand why my Mum loved them so much .

They stayed where you put them, they did not get sick, or have a disease, they did not leave you, they were a constant. They loved you, and could be counted on, unlike humans, they were somewhat infallible . I am gaining a deeper understanding into my Mum’s psyche.

Some of the crew, seated, and posing quite nicely amongst the antique suitcases

Nothing to see here folks.. except a few pandas up a tree

On Mother’s Day weekend I was filled up to the overflow with gratitude for my life , the Mother that God graced me with, she wasn’t perfect, far from it, but I loved her .

I remember countless shopping trips, adventures to Europe, junking in numerous antique shops, picking flowers, eating big breakfast crepes at Cora’s, road trips to the cottage, her loving to sweep the pine needles from the stairs, and her picking weeds with her bare hands, wine sipped dockside, prayers raised for family and friends, hymns sung together, and “Gilmore Girls” episodes viewed, late night chats, her loving on her grandchildren, make up applied , tears shed, and laughter by the bucketload.

I used to say “ don’t bug me Alice,” when she would get on my nerves, and this always ended up with us laughing, as she would stare me down, until one of us caved, then I would get her silent laughter, as I would say something grossly inappropriate, and she just simply could not even help herself.

“Moming”…it’s a thing.. and it’s important. it is a verb meaning “ to be in the active mode of Mothering some person or thing in order to bring life and love.”

Wishing a belated and sincere Happy Mother’s Day to all of our Mother’s out there. We are grateful for all the ways that you sacrificially, and tirelessly poured, snd continue to live out your lives into ours.

Just a few of Mum’s sketches that I discovered in an old book about Winnie the Pooh.. Priceless …

Mum and Brody in Kanata, Ontario

Miss you Mum.. until later … thank you …


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