Tag Archives: mothers

Missing Mom

7 Oct


This is the first year since 2014 that I don’t absolutely hate October.

October, my birth month, used to be my favorite month. This was true whether I lived in California, New Jersey, or anywhere in-between. It didn’t matter if I was turning 8 that month or 48; October was what it was all about.

Then my Mom died October 19, 2014. Suddenly October didn’t have the same appeal.

This is the first year I haven’t re-created all the events from the time she first went into the hospital on September 21 until she died in hospice on October 19.

I think I’ve felt that by not remembering all those days I was somehow dishonoring her.

Now I believe re-living all those memories is not what she would want.

She’d want me to remember how when we’d go into New York City from my grandparents’ house on Long Island, she’d stop on the busy sidewalk and stare up at the closest building. Soon there would be a crowd gathered, all looking up, and Mom would swoosh us away with her, leaving the crowd behind, still gaping upward.

She’d want me to remember how when I bought my first pair of spikes, she was so excited because she thought I was finally becoming somewhat feminine. Imagine her surprise when I pulled a pair of softball spikes out of the bag.

She’d want me to remember the childhood days of “Sing Along with Mitch Miller,” when Mom’s beautiful alto voice led us.

She’d want me to remember how she lived, not how she died.

This is how I choose to honor her on the soon to be 5th anniversary of her death. I could say she passed, she got her angel wings, she’s with her holy Father, etc., but she died. That still feels fairly fresh. I suppose it always will.

Sometimes when a loved one dies, the survivors are told to “stay strong.” I always thought this was bullshit. Grieve how you need to grieve. We all grieve differently and at different paces. As a wise acquaintance once told me, there’s a difference between hard and impossible. It is hard to get along without a loved one, but it is not impossible.

It never gets better, but it does get different.

I suppose perhaps one day I’ll be able to write about her without crying, but today is not that day.

I love you Mom.

Not Enough Tears – Eleanor Marie Willett Mannion, 11/17/32-10/19/14

17 Nov



no thoughts from head to voice to air,

lyrics spout from heart throat out everywhere.

there are not enough tears, enough songs,

to remember, everything, every way,

you nourished me, encouraged me.

you completed my rhymes,

sing along with Mitch Miller time.



it will be so, it must be, it shall be,

as it was in the beginning, it ends.

first question why, last question why,

unthinkable, unimaginable time.

always with me now, always with me always,

always me, always you, always us,

it’s always been you and me against the world.



across the street, across the country,

your belly, trains, Fords, hydrofoil, planes.

hot cocoa in SUI, a lamp trip to VT,

no sodas in Boston, alarms in ALB.

sing a song with me, Mom.

ring a bell for me, Mom.

pray each night for me til we meet again.

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