Today would be my Mother’s 100th birthday. She used to laugh and joke about how she was going to live to be 100. Even though she died at 66 from a second round of cancer, I believe a part of her is still alive in my heart if nothing else.
My Mother was born on March 1st 1922. She was the youngest of three children and the only girl. When she was four years old her father died from appendicitis. That was much more difficult to treat in those days, especially without the help of antibiotics. After his death, her mother and the three children moved closer to family. The love and support of family made all the difference for them.
Even though my Mother’s adult life was often challenging, she always loved her children and grandchildren more than anything. She would sing fun songs that the children loved like “Mairzy Doats” and “The Purple People Eater”. When I was a teenager she was always understanding and supportive of my interests. By then she was sick much of the time and I often took care of her as much as I was able when I wasn’t in school.
I have so many memories of the little things about my Mother, such as some of the items she carried in her purse. There was always Dentyne gum, a small tube of Blistix, a handkerchief, a compact, and lipstick. She used Coty cologne and makeup and I still remember the scent of both. She took great joy in simple things and loved gardening. One of her favorite activities was getting together with as much family as possible and having a picnic at a creek or lake nearby. You know, it’s the many little things we remember about our loved ones that we later realize were actually the big things.