The memories we carry

One of the experiences my mother was most proud of was her service as a WAVE during World War II, so it’s fitting that today, on what would be her 97th birthday, we remember D-Day.

My mother, gone so many years, still visits me often in dreams and brief memories. I can no longer hear her voice or imagine her laugh. And yet she remains a huge part of my life, of my foundation, of my solace and of my love.

I want to remember a story, a day start to finish when she and I were together. But I can’t. And I find this very sad, but then I can still feel the memories of her. I may not remember a day. I may not remember her voice. But I do remember the way I felt with her. I remember the comfort of her. I remember her joy, her pain, her love and her warmth. I remember wanting to share my days with her all through my childhood and even as a teenager, and I remember wanting to call her when I lived far away, when long distance calls were expensive and I couldn’t afford to talk long. And so I talked fast. And these are the memories I carry with me. It is those memories that build me up, keep me strong and allow me to move forward.

It seems my capacity for easy memories is limited, my carry-on bag holding only what’s necessary. Happy Birthday to the woman I called Mom, the one I carry with me always.

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