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10 Long Years

Posted in Personal

heal [ hēl ], transitive verb: to make free from injury or disease : to make sound or whole


They say time heals all wounds. I disagree, I think time closes all wounds. After all, if you have a large scar, are you truly healed?

10 years ago, at about 4:00 am, my dad woke me up to let me know my mom was gone. I’d been staying with him to help take care of her.

It’s hard for me to believe that it’s already been 10 years. Where did the time go? How did my life keep moving forward without my mom? This is one of those wounds that time doesn’t really heal.

As time has ruthlessly marched on, I first found that the pain, rather than lessening, was less constant. It’s just like a wound in the healing process. First, it hurts all the time. Then, only with certain movements. But, if the scab gets ripped off, it hurts just as bad. Sometimes, it even hurts worse.

Me and my mom

My memories worked like that. Some would rip the scab off of the wound of my loss in a moment of intense grief. Others were more like a bump to a partially healed would; they’d hurt, but it would be a minor concern.

Eventually, though, like a physical wound, it closed. But wounds that are ripped open over and over don’t heal, they close and scar. There is always a reminder of what happened, and you’re never the same again.

Even 10 years later, my brain picks at that scar, playing tricks on me. When something major happens, my first thought is to call and tell my mom, only to remember a split second later that I can’t. Or, visiting my dad, I have a moment where I picture both him and my mom waiting to meet me.

Me posing for a formal photo with my mom and dad.
On a cruise the summer of 2004

The grief long ago ceased to be a constant, but there are moments when it flairs again, like an old wound overstretched. Memories pop to the surface, catching me off guard.

Time has, however, granted me the ability to savor the happy memories. Not all memories hurt now. I can appreciate the ones that warm me with their glow of love and happiness remembered.

One of the best is my memory of her voice, light and full of love when she called me “kiddo.” I can also remember her “mom” voice as she called me by my full name — all 6 words of it. *wince*

Me and my mom in costumes for Halloween

I will be forever thankful that I got 23 and a half good years with her. My mom was — is — an excellent woman, and I love her so much. But I can’t help but wish we’d had more time together; that I’d been able to learn more from her.

I’ve you’ve made it to the end of this post, go call your mom — if you can — and tell her you love her. Do it for all of us who can’t.

Thanks for reading to the end. If you’ve lost anyone close to you, I’m sorry. If you haven’t, I’m very happy for your good fortune. Make sure they know how important they are to you.

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  1. Julia L
    Julia L

    I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my mom 13 years ago. And we were both too young to lose our moms. You really put what you’re feeling really eloquently. And I totally identify with it. Sending love to you,

    February 4, 2023
    • I’m sorry for your loss as well. And thank you.

      February 5, 2023
  2. Rachel,

    I feel your pain. I still have both my parents but 6 years ago our son dropped dead in front of us. He was 27. Totally agree, time does not heal. I personally feel it picks at the scabs. We too have gotten better about memories and make a point of sharing them each year. I hope you find the same comfort.

    February 3, 2023
    • I’m so sorry for your loss. I do find comfort in the happy memories. They’re how I make sure she’s always with me.

      February 3, 2023

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