Its a year to the day that mum died. It is hotter here than it was last year and the shellshock that accompanied me for most of January is a faded memory. They say that time heals all wounds and they are right. I can think of mum with fond memories now and at Christmas I put a little posy of her favourite flowers on her memory tree that we planted in her honour (thanks Nat ๐Ÿ™‚ ). I think about mum much more now than I did when she was alive. I hope that doesn’t sound bad but when she was alive she was always sharing little emails and messaging and was always in our lives…now she is ethereal and floats in and out of my conciousness at will…usually she tells me how to garden…she reminds me to put the compost bin out and to water the garden and to give Bezial an extra doggy treat while Earl isn’t looking. She has moved from “mum” to something more fundamental. She was once physical and now she is base instinct in my soul. We all have to go through this and learn our life lessons from death and losing someone more than close and come out the other side scared and surviving. It’s our human rite of passage and its important to show us our own mortality and to allow us to deal with it. If mum could get 1 day to look down from wherever it is that she is and I could tell her what she meant to me, I would have to say “you gave me courage and you gave me a chance to be “me”…you always supported me whether I deserved that support or not and I know the meaning of a mothers love…it was always there and always ready to flare up at a moments notice. I am sorry that I wan’t the best daughter but I tried to let you be “you”…you didn’t have an easy life but you had a most determined one and an ending that gave you grace. Thank you for being my mum…for giving me what you did and for everything that you did for me. Its only when you have children of your own that you learn to forgive your parents their idiosycrisities…by the way…Bezial is on a diet and I am NOT going to give him that extra treat and whenever you feel like a bit of a look-see out on the deck overlooking the river feel free…the spot under the kitchen window is all yours :)…


Hi All,

Yesterday my mother died. She had been a constant reader and commenter on this blog and loved how she was able to get a little bit of us and where we are and what we are doing each and every day. I wanted to share my mum with you all so that you could see a little bit of what formed the words that I type here each day. I wonโ€™t do a eulogy, thatโ€™s for funerals and this isnโ€™t about her funeral this is about her life and who she was. I am sure that all of my siblings will agree with me when I say that mum was one of a kind and that they broke the mould when she was born. She was an amazing mix of stubborn willpower that steadfastly refused to give in and she always found a way to do what sheโ€ฆ

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21 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ediblethings
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 10:48:11

    Wow, these are beautiful and powerful words.

    I am lucky enough to still have my mum, but your words have really made me think about what she has given me.

    It’s sort of funny, but you can trace the eldest daughters right through my mum’s line, I am like her, and she was like her mum, and her mum was like my great grandmother. It is late here now, but your words have prompted me to call her, and than her for letting me become me. And us.

    I’ll do this tomorrow morning.

    Your mum sounds like she was brilliant, and you were all loved. I am sorry that she is no longer with you, but in many ways she still is. I’m sorry that my clumsy words cannot be more meaningful, but I’m glad for your happy memories


    • narf77
      Jan 06, 2013 @ 11:10:45

      A year on and the pain of her death has healed into a deep feeling of love…I wish I had kept her letters that she sent me and her emails but we don’t think of things like that when our parents are alive. Give your mum a verbal hug from me…she raised a good eldest daughter ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. Pinky
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 11:44:13

    Ah my eyes are leaking as I type this Fronkii. It’s really strange how Mums absence has changed me. If anything, it has forced me to take the time to smell the roses as the saying goes! The one thing that we never will have to do is put either Mum or Dad into a Nursing home and for that, I am truly grateful. I cannot believe the state of the homes in Albany and probably everywhere for that matter, how badly some of the patients/clients are treated, especially the dementia patients. There are just not enough “trained” workers. They do a 3 week speed course and are apparently qualified to be patient assistants! Thank God for small mercies that Mum and Dad never had to suffer that indignity, I would have found a way to keep them out.
    How are you guys with bushfire threats near you? I know your a long way from Hobart but the risks are just as bad near you. Take care Fronkii and devise an escape plan for you Steve and the animals. xox


    • narf77
      Jan 06, 2013 @ 12:09:05

      Escape plan…”RUN AWAY!”… ๐Ÿ˜‰ Seriously though Pinky, we would just hightail it down to the river and Steve could fiddle (well guitar) while Rome burned… Hopefully that will NEVER happen but that’s our escape plan.


  3. foodnstuff
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 12:14:21

    Nice post (and the original one of 12 months ago…I mustn’t have found you then). The 1st anniversary is always the worst (you can’t believe a year has gone). Couldn’t find the ‘like’ button, so this is to say ‘Like and understand’.


    • narf77
      Jan 06, 2013 @ 12:25:13

      ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks Bev… I tend to be someone who faces up to whatever happens head on and it hit me hard for a few months but like a sharp cut, it heals quickly and my memories of mum are now all positive and nostalgic and minus that raw aching pain that immediacy deals you. She is with me when I am working in the veggie garden and always tells me what to do (bossing ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) in the rest of the garden…she loved it here and we can feel her smiling out at the river like she was just before she left Serendipity Farm last Christmas…time really does heal :).


  4. Kym
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 15:14:41

    Nicely said Fran. x


  5. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 20:12:44

    A sad anniversary Fran.
    Hearing more dreadful news of the bush fires in Tasmania.
    Thinking of you.


    • narf77
      Jan 07, 2013 @ 04:31:28

      Thank you Jean for your kind thoughts. The bushfires have been devastating for home loss and for the native and farm animals. We have been very lucky up here in that all we got was a bit of smoke. I feel so sorry for the people down south who have lost everything in the fires.


  6. Kari @ bite-sized thoughts
    Jan 06, 2013 @ 23:50:44

    I’m so sorry about your loss, although I appreciate I’m a year late in saying so – but I imagine these anniversaries hit very hard. This is a beautiful post.

    I hope you’re ok with the Tasmanian fires, too – your weather and the fires sound horrible right now.


    • narf77
      Jan 07, 2013 @ 04:35:40

      Our weather is hot for Tasmania but not from where we come from in Western Australia…it is surprising how quickly you acclimatise to your new conditions though! Back in W.A. I would have still been wearing a jumper in our conditions but here it is sarong and short top ;). I worked through mum’s death in stages last year. I am someone who likes to face things head on if at all possible and I let it tumble me around straight up and have come out the end of my grief to a place where I no longer feel raw grief about mum dying now. I can think about her sharing her gardening knowledge and know that she lives on in what she taught us and her ethos and pride and joy at being her daughter has replaced sadness and loss. Thank you for your very kind thoughts ๐Ÿ™‚


  7. Korena in the Kitchen
    Jan 07, 2013 @ 06:04:18

    “She has moved from “mum” to something more fundamental. She was once physical and now she is base instinct in my soul.”

    There is probably nothing more meaningful that you could do to honour your mum’s memory than exactly that. Reading your post got me a little teary – I hate to think of the day when I will lose my own mum – and reminded me of this poem: Sending you gentle thoughts today.


    • narf77
      Jan 07, 2013 @ 06:47:53

      What a beautiful sentiment in that poem…coming and going…who knows where we go but we do. I do have her in me now and she is constantly telling me how to garden…I am thinking about having to have a chat with her to tell her that I DO have a diploma in horticulture and I DO know a little bit about what I am doing…the problem is that dad chimes in as well! A year can definately heal, especially if you allow yourself to grieve properly and you give yourself over to the truth of it all. Thank you for your kind thoughts and for that beautiful poem that I have just tucked away in my “interesting things” folder for posterity and to be passed along to someone else who needs it :). Thank you again from across the miles ๐Ÿ™‚


    Jan 07, 2013 @ 09:31:07

    I’m glad the passing of time is dulling the pain of your mum’s passing and heightening the memories and reasons to smile when you think of her. What a blessing to have grown up with such a passionate gardener – I hope you find comfort in the seasons changing and knowing that no matter how bad it can seem sometimes ‘this too shall pass’. As you were writing your post last year I was waiting to become a mum (he kept me waiting nearly 2 weeks!) and a year on reading about the love you expressed for your mother has a whole new meaning for me now. There’s something about being a parent that inspires you to be the best version of yourself and this is our gift to our children. Take care, N x


    • narf77
      Jan 07, 2013 @ 09:40:50

      Its like something changes inside you when you give birth to your children. You change fundamentally and suddenly what didn’t matter before and what you completely didn’t understand about your mum, becomes more vital and pertinent than ever. It’s almost like a secret club that you enter into without having to give handshakes and it binds you with all other mums and gives you a degree of understanding that goes much MUCH deeper than lip service. When you lose your mum you lose something precious and you owe it to her to give your whole self over to grieve for her. I did, and it healed much quicker after. Now, a year later, I can think about her and smile. I can put some flowers on her memory tree that we planted for her and I can remember her fondly…time really does heal and now she is with me in the garden…things that she told me come back and I get comfort and solace from what she shared with me. We all have to go through this process, like a rite of passage, but it is how we allow ourselves to grow from it that really matters. Thank you so much for commenting. My post was written a year ago on the day that she died. I was numb with grief and shock and my words came from my aching soul. I read those words at her funeral and they are as real today as they were back then but I have that year of distance that has given me time to heal. ๐Ÿ™‚


  9. Melanie
    Jan 08, 2013 @ 06:01:06

    Thank you for visiting my blog. I got teary reading your entry. My mom is living with me now because she is getting weaker and can’t be alone. I’m learning to treasure each day with her. Hugs to you as you experience this one year mark. Your mum sounded like an extraordinary lady!


    • narf77
      Jan 08, 2013 @ 06:14:29

      Hi Melanie, cheers for checking out my blog and well done getting back on the vegan cart :). I will tell you a little secret…I eat an egg every time I make spring rolls…they just don’t taste as good without it and we use an egg from our free range chooks so I feel no guilt whatsoever ;). Mum died a year ago and that was my wake-up call back to healthy eating. She was indeed a character and a fantastic gardener. Hug your mum and tell her that you love her because when she is gone, you can’t. While she is here, share lots of happy times with her…happy times make happy memories :).


  10. Joanne
    Jan 09, 2013 @ 00:16:00

    This is such a beautiful post. I’m still waiting for that point where I can look back on my father’s death like this but honestly I still can’t believe he’s gone. It’s nice to know that it will get a bit easier, with time.


    • narf77
      Jan 09, 2013 @ 09:49:10

      I know what you mean, but I guess mum moved from “out there” to “inside”…I can hear her encouragement and her telling me how to do things and she hasn’t really “gone”…just moved :).


  11. Chica Andaluza
    Jan 10, 2013 @ 09:23:32

    Beautiful, brave, honest. A lovely tribute.


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