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Tuesday, 22 January 2013

My Mum

My dear Mum died on Saturday. It was a very sad time, but I will always be grateful that I was able to spend the last week of her life with her, when we talked of many things, remembered many people, family events and family members.  We had a lot of fun recalling things we had done and trips we had taken together.

My mother was very well travelled, having lived and worked in Burma, Iraq, Egypt, Australia and India (among other countries) but she'd never got to North America till I managed to take her on two trips as a companion when I was writing articles there.

The first time we went to Chicago, Toronto and Niagara Falls, where we visited friends, toured the Frank Lloyd Wright House, marvelled at the Falls and met with a cousin of hers that she had not seen since her twenties. The second time we spent a week at Walt Disney World, Florida. and she loved it all - not just the parks (and specially the parrot in the lobby at the Hyatt Regency hotel where we stayed)  but also visiting with friends on their ranch near Oveido and eating pancakes with other friends to De Leon Springs state park .

She was very fond of T and he and I  took her to stay with us in several beautiful cottages in different parts of England.  Perhaps the most attractive was a 200 year old converted orangery in the grounds of Frampton Court, Gloucestershire.


One day on our last holiday together, we went to a summer fete in the Cotswolds, where we were amused at a cake competition for the village. Here's the second prizewinner in the children's cake section, a cake shaped like a ladybird. .


Don't you think there's something rather .... welll ... ragged about this prizewinning cake? We were very amused to read what was written on the prize label.



On the same holiday we played for a long time with some pretty little cats frolicking  in a garden centre. A few days ago Mum asked to see pictures of the cats, but they were on my computer at home, so I am putting one of them on now.


We also spent a lot of time with her in recent years at her home, and to any of  you who have the chance to see and spend time with your loved ones, my advice is do it when you can.  It lays down good memories.

I'm going to miss my darling Mum so very much. 

84 comments :

  1. A very touching post and a tribute to your mother, Jenny. The photos are a testament to the wonderful times you had together. I lost both my parents some years ago now, but I am glad I still have photos to help me keep their memory warm.

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  2. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family during this time. I lost my own mother over 15 years ago. I still miss her dearly even to this day.

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  3. I am so very sorry, Jenny. You have my sympathy and prayers. I lost my Mom a few years ago. It's very difficult. I'm glad you had your time together. I'm sure she was a wonderful woman. *HUGS*

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  4. Oh, what wonderful adventures you had with your mum who raised a creative caring daughter. My deepest condolences on your loss! It is good to hear that you had chances to visit and enjoy her company for many years though. I lost my mom when I was quite young and am sad I didn’t give her more attention because, I suppose, I expected she would live forever or be at least 100 years old like Lilian in your post below.

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  5. I'm so sorry, Jenny. It sounds like you had a good relationship and some fun times together. I hope those memories sustain and bring you great peace.

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  6. Hello Jenny:
    We were much saddened to read this post and are so very sorry to learn of the death of your mother. You write here of her with real love and affection and we are certain that, in the future, you will have so many good memories with which to remember her.

    In the meantime, please accept our deepest sympathy in your loss.

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  7. Oh Jenny, I am so sorry to hear that! You did mention that your Mum wasn't so well health-wise, but somehow I did not expect to read this sad news from you so soon.
    You are so, so very right about spending time with our loved ones while we can. To this day, my sisters-in-law regret that they never made the short trip from England to Germany to see their brother during the 9 years we lived together. Only when he died they managed to come over for the funeral, when they would have been so very welcome here all the time before, too.
    Your memories are very precious, and I thank you for sharing some of them with us.

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  8. My sincere condolences on the loss of your mom. What a beautiful thing to have such wonderful memories of her and that you were able to be with her at then end. She sounds like an amazing woman.

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  9. Sorry to hear your news, Jenny. I hope those lovely memories will be a comfort in the days to come. Take care. x

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  10. So sorry to hear of your loss, Jenny. There really are no words that can begin to fill such a loss, but I'm pleased you got to spend time with your mum, particularly recently, and fascinating to hear you both shared such a passion for places. Thinking of you.

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  11. My sincerest condolences. It is wonderful that you are able to focus on the happy memories and times.

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  12. So sorry to hear of your Mother's death Jenny. I am glad you have some wonderful memories of her stored away. Take extra care of yourself the next few weeks.

    Darla

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  13. I'm so very sorry to hear of your Mum's passing. How lovely that you have so many happy memories of times shared with her. They will be a great comfort to you as you come to terms with your loss.

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  14. Oh Jenny I'm so sorry, I know how close you were to her, and how worried you have been. I hope these memories give you a little comfort.

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  15. My deepest sympathies for your loss
    Prayers your journey now will be a path made more beautiful from all your wonderful memories of your Mother.

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  16. Sorry to hear of your loss, but glad to hear of the time you had together. Time is one of our most precious gifts. I lost my mother 20 years ago, but she'll always be in my heart.

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  17. Sorry for your loss but glad for your memories and abiity to say good bye.

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  18. Please accept my condolences for your loss. No matter how long we have our loved ones, it is never long enough.

    You have written a moving tribute to a wonderful woman.

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  19. Please accept my deepest sympathy for your loss.

    Your mother sounds a wonderful, vital woman...and your love for her is clear in what you write about her.

    I am sure that, while no consolation now, your memory of the time spent with her and listening to her will always be real and precious.

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  20. Sincer condolences to you and your family, Jenny. It is good that you were there for her right to the end. I'm glad you showed the cats.

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  21. So sorry for your loss, I stopped by your blog the other day, and saw you hadn't posted anything, that's why I hadn't seen you around. Now I can understand. I've lost both parents now, too, but one thing you and I and everyone else that have said their last good-byes, is our memories. It sounds as if you too have loads of wonderful moments to recall. Then there's my children and their children and very often one of them says or looks or does something that brings my mother back to me! We keep her memory alive everyday, it's all we can do.

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  22. Jenny, I am so sorry for your loss. It is wonderful to have such good memories if your mum, and I hope that they will help you to grieve. Take care.

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  23. So sorry for your loss Jenny. She will live on in happy memories.

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  24. What a moving tribute to your mum! I lost mine when I was only 20 (32 years ago..) and I miss her every day. You're right, to enjoy every moment to make of them precious memories is what has to be done. You are lucky enough to have shared all those wonderful moments with her.Keep them as a treasure .My sad and sincerest condolences.

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  25. Jenny, I have no doubt that your Mother was a great treasure, and I know that you will find comfort in the wealth of warm memories that she has given you. My heart goes out to you and your family at this very difficult time.

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  26. So sorry to hear of your loss. Sounds good that you got some time together talking of the past though. Hope the good memories will help you through all the other things that one has to deal with.

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  27. I am so very sorry to hear your news, Jenny. Your mum sounds like a lovely lady and you have some wonderful memories of time spent with her. Be kind to yourself and take care xx

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  28. I´m so sorry, Jenny.
    Take care. Kisses.

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  29. That's great that you were able to spend the final week with her, sharing your common memories. It must be very upsetting when someone goes unexpectedly without a chance to say a proper goodbye.

    I love the message on the cake. Very honest!

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  30. Sorry to hear your news, Jenny.
    But what a lovely post today about your Mum.

    cheers, parsnip

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  31. I feel for you ... and send you hugs. What can I say but that I too have been in this place .. thank goodness for the memories.

    Vicky x

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  32. My dearest Jenny,
    I am so so pleased for you and your darling Mum that you were able to spend that last week together and able to communicate. This was a great gift.
    My heart aches for your loss, and you of course will miss your dearest friend so very much.
    Thinking of you
    Hugs
    Rose
    PS: the cake - (big smiles)

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  33. My dear Jenny, I'm sorry your mother's death, I walked in feeling. You have written a beautiful post in his honor. A huge hug and I'm really sorry.

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  34. I'm so sorry to hear this Jenny. I lost my Dad just before Christmas and I can sympathise with how you must be feeling. Those memories are so important.

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  35. Oh Jenny! Sincerest condoleances!!
    Those special times shared with her made her I am sure the happiest of Mums!
    Thinking of you and praying too,

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  36. I'm so very sorry to hear, Jenny. You had so many precious moments together, over a lifetime. She sounds a marvelous person. I lost my dear father not long ago and your advice is so spot-on. Hope you're taking care of yourself.

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  37. Jenny, I am so sorry. It sounds like you have so many wonderful memories. Thank you for sharing them with us. Take care of yourself at this time. Holding you in my heart. Hugs! Bonnie

    p.s. a dog took a bite out of my cake is sort of like the dog ate my homework...do I still get credit?

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  38. My condolences on your loss. You have some nice memories of your mother. Please take care of yourself.

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  39. My condolences for the loss of your precious mom. What a joy it must have been for her to spend her final days with you.

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  40. I'm so sorry, but also so glad you spent that week just remembering.

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  41. My condolences. A truly dear old mum.

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  42. It hurts so much when you lose your mother. You have such wonderful memories of her that will help you get through the days ahead.

    It has been ten years for me since I lost my wonderful mom, but everyday she is with me in my heart.

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  43. Touching and tender message about your mum . . . I believe the memories from our lives are our "forever gifts!". I loved your sharing . . .

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  44. Sad news, and I am sure that you will miss your mum very much. But you will have a bundle of memories to keep you going - nothing can ever destroy those.

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  45. It's difficult to say anything because nothing will make any difference to how you feel. All I can say is that I'm thinking of you and understand what it's like to lose a parent. Take care.

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  46. Sorry to read your news. However I am so glad you spent time with her at the end. Glad for both of you there. Glad you have good memories which will always be with you.

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  47. So sorry to hear of your loss Jenny. Your mum sounds like an amazing lady and I am so glad you were able to spend lots of time with her recently. Cherish your memories.
    M x

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  48. My sincerest condolences for you loss and this was a very lovely tribute to your mum.

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  49. Dear Jenny, I am so terribly sorry to hear about your mom. It's an odd feeling, losing our parent(s) -- all that loss, all that history. But I am so very glad that you had some good times together in that last week, time where you could remember all the fun things and the joys. She sounds wonderful and as though she certainly built the foundation for your travel adventures in life. That's a gift, opening your daughter to the world. I know she must have been so proud and delighted to experience your travels and to travel with you herself. My mom died when I was 25 -- it was too young to lose a mother, especially when you aren't fully formed yourself. I have always hoped she saw the person I became. I am glad your mum had the opportunity to see that with you. (And by the way, from my point of view, writing and speaking of her is so healing; I'm so glad you shared this with us.) Sending many warm hugs across the sea.

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  50. Oh, Jenny, I am so so sorry to hear of your mum's passing. I know you were spending a lot of time with her over the past few months. My thoughts go out to you and your family. She sounds like she lived an extraordinary life, having lived in the Far East, Near East, and more. I've always thought that travels shape a person much more than school does. Her experiences must have made her such a strong, insightful and interesting person. And it's lovely that you both shared the same passion for adventures around the world or in the English countryside.

    I lost my mom 2 years ago and there is truly a hole in my heart for her. My mom's last days were the most intense ones in my entire life (so far). But as time has passed, I actually think of her more, and think and act more like her. I don't know if it's my way of bringing my mom back to life, or if it's just part of natural human development. It's certain my entire family has changed a bit since she departed.

    Anyhow, like you, I remember the many trips my mom and I took together, most of them while I was still in college or graduate school. One very memorable one was a trip to Oberammergau in Bavaria, where we stayed with the villagers and watched their Passion Play. It was quite an experience to stay in a rustic house where the dining room was right next to where the cows and pigs were kept! Incredibly too, the villagers host the audience (tourists) as well as act in and stage the play.

    Hold on to your memories. And my sincerest condolences to you and your family.

    Jenny

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  51. So sorry for your loss but glad the memories are good ones. Love to you, your sister and the family. Thinking of you, John.

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  52. Jenny, so sorry to read of your Mum's passing. I understand how you miss her as we all do on losing a loved parent. Enjoy thoughts of happy times with her - Dave

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  53. So sorry to hear about your loss. What adventures you were able to share with her though and you have many happy memories to hold close. Although it's a tough thing to do, sharing in someone's passing is part of our cycle of life and precious though heatbreaking at the same time. I hope the many happy memories will help over the coming difficult months. Give yourself time to grieve. Grief comes upon us at the most unexpected times - I found myself howling over the washing up once....sigh.... just let it come.... it helps heal the pain and make way for the happier memories.

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  54. Thank you, everyone, for your lovely and kind comments. I feel as if mum is with me and I have been looking through old photos and remembering both her and my dear dad, who died some years ago. I like to think of the times they were in good health and spirits and having fun and I am spending a lot of time thinking how I appreciate them. Both my parents accepted that their deaths were part of the cycle of life, even though neither of them wished to go. In their final lucid moments, I am happy that both of them accepted and were, actually, content with it.

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  55. So sorry to read your sad news Jenny. It was good you were able to be with her on that final week and share things that were special in her memory.

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  56. Jenny,
    I know what it means to lose a loved and a close one. Your mother gave you a life, and I think she was proud of you and loved you very much.
    I am so sorry, my dear!

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  57. Please accept my sympathy for the loss of your Mother.
    Mum's are special, I lost mine in 1997 and miss her every day.
    I'm glad you shared so many special times with her, and I'm sure those memories will comfort you in the days to come.
    xx

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  58. So sorry to read this Jenny. And a lovely dignified post for your mum.
    You're right about spending time with your family, especially the aged relatives.
    I don't regret a minute spent with mine now.

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  59. I am so sorry to hear your loss. I think I know how you feel. It was so good you had spent a lot with your mum and shared lots of joy and excitement with her. Nothing seems to be regretted, however, like someone mentioned a grief flashes across our mind at most unexpected times. I think it's quite natural. Please take good care of yourself, Jenny.

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  60. I'm so sorry to hear this, Jenny! I hope your memories continue to bring comfort. (I've also decided that I need to give my mother lots of extra hugs when I see her in South Africa next month ... )

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  61. Jenny,I am sorry for your loss.Mother is always special for daughters.How sad you are.
    You were with your mother at the end. I believe your mother went to the other world in peace.
    This post is a beautiful tribute to your mother,Jenny.
    Tomoko from Japan

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  62. So very sorry for your loss. A poignant tribute to your Mother, her spirit lives on in your heart. ~ Minerva x

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  63. So sad to hear of your mothers death Jenny. Your post is a wonderful tribute to her and she will continue to live in your memories.

    Thinking of you.

    Anna

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  64. Jenny, I'm very sad to hear of your Mum's passing. My most sincere condolences.

    Eternal rest, grant unto her O Lord
    and let perpetual light shine upon her

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  65. I’m so sorry to hear about your loss of loved mother. You seem to have nice traits from your mother like love of travelling. The pleasant time with her will be full-grown when you remember her – the pleasures back in time and memory now is one thing. Take care of yourself, Jenny.

    Yoko

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  66. Sorry to hear about your loss Jenny.

    You wrote a very nice and poignant tribute to her.

    Take care.

    Our thoughts with you,

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  67. I'm sorry very sorry to hear of your mother's death.
    What a loss to you.
    I'm so glad you had the chance to travel and enjoy so much together.
    All best wishes.

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  68. I am sorry to learn of your mother's death. She sounds like she was an interested and interesting person, always up for exploration and adventure. It is pleasing, as others have said, that you both had pleasure in one anothers' company. Warm wishes

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  69. I am so sorry for your loss. As you say, it was a blessing to be able to be by her side in her last days and to recall happy memories that you'd created together. She must have felt blessed to have you there, throughout her life and at the end of it. Thank you for sharing some of your happy memories here. And for the timely advice.

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  70. Is there anything harder than losing your Mother ? Let's hope we never find out - my sincere condolences to you - I do know what your are going through. Thank goodness for these wonderful memories you have, and the time you spent with your dear Mother ......Bless her.....

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  71. My heart goes out to you, dear Jenny. It has been ten years since I lost my mum but I still feel that her spirit is around me and it is a comfort. Cherished memories are a comfort too. It was so good that you could have trips together. Take care, hugs.

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  72. She sounds lovely. Heartfelt condolences.

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  73. She not went away forever, now lives in his memories, from the beyond will continue protecting it.

    Greetings

    http://ventanadefoto.blogspot.com.es/

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  74. Oh, Jenny, I'm so very sorry. I do know how you feel and my heart goes out to you. xx

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  75. Lovely understated post that conveys so much. Bless you, dear.



    Sending Aloha to YOU
    from Honolulu,
    Comfort Spiral
    ~ > < } } ( ° >

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  76. So sorry about your mum. It is the hardest loss in the world.

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  77. Jenny, just checking in on you -- I've been where you are more than I wish, losing dear parents. And I know sometimes the really tough part settles in after they have been gone for a week or two or three or five or ten and there you are. Just wanted to let you know I was thinking of you.

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  78. Thank you for more kind and caring comments. I have really appreciated them. I'll be posting soon, and getting round to visiting blogs after everything is done. Right now it is all very busy. Thank you again from my heart.

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  79. So sorry that I came upon this rather late because of family problems here.
    Thinking of you, and sending my very best supportive wishes to you all. How lovely that you were able to spend time together in that way.

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  80. I also just came across this post. I am sorry for your loss. Take care of yourself.
    Love,
    Kay

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  81. I am so sorry to hear your loss. How sad it is. My deepest condolences to you.
    Sorry Jenny, I did not know this.
    keiko

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  82. Oh Jenny, I'm so sorry for your loss and sorry too to be visiting so late. I hope you're okay and that you find your feet soon.

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