A few words to my mother on her birthday...

Dear Mom,

Today you would have been 57 years old. I wish so badly you were here to celebrate with us. I can just hear you laughing now and see you dancing with no regard to whose watching, or what anyone thinks. You passed away on June 14, 2009. I can't believe it has been over a year. It's all still so surreal. I keep thinking, "Is this really the course my life has taken? Where you're not physically in this with me? I'm only 26. And you were only 55." This was never part of the plan. I never expected to lose you so soon, so early. All the things I would have done differently had I known. I'm so glad I was there though, to be there for you. I wish you didn't have to suffer as much as you did. Breast cancer is an ugly disease.

I still remember a time from a couple years ago, I watched you cut your finger while chopping vegetables in the kitchen. I felt so helpless as I looked at the anguish on your face. I'd have rather it been my finger. In that moment, I was reminded how utterly human you were and that you weren't as invincible as I'd always believed as a child.

Observing helplessly as the cancer took over your body before my very eyes was the scariest thing I've ever experienced. But I'm okay, and we're all okay, because your spirit never faltered. I don't know how you did it, Mom, but you stared down death and overcame the fear. I was so proud of you. You're my hero. I keep reminding myself that so many people have lost loved ones, their moms, dads, children, especially to cancer. I'm not alone in carrying this pain with me everyday. It's startling yet comforting at the same time to think so many others feel the dull aching, longing that I do; the kind that tends to catch me off guard at the most inappropriate moments. The void that will always be there when someone great is gone.

Me and the boys dream about you all the time. Sometimes your sitting by my side, holding me close and telling me that you're still here. Other times your in church with a bright light shining down on you, your loud (off-pitch :)) singing voice overpowering everyone else around you. Every dream resonates with the underlying message that you're still here, you're still with us. The other night, I dreamt that we were both in a helicopter over the ocean. You were driving the helicopter fiercely and trying to push me out. I held on with all my might, ignoring your voice telling me to "let go." The dream ended with me finally letting go, falling in the water, and being instantly at ease as the waves folded me in. I thought, "She was right. I'm okay."

In my happiest moments, I feel you smiling with me. I can feel your pride surround me. I replay in my mind all the times you encouraged me and told me I could do anything.

Here's to you, Mom. Thank you for being an amazing mom, an even better friend, and a beacon of courage and strength for us to draw near to when we're feeling weak.

Today, at 6 pm, we'll all sing you happy birthday, thank God for creating such a powerful force of a woman, and enjoy some muy delicioso Mexican food in your honor. I'll be sure to eat an extra tamale (or two) for you madre :)

Yours Forever,

{My mom had instructed me to use this photo for her memorial service a month prior to her passing. This is her in February 09 after learning her cancer returned, at her favorite spot in LA, Olvera Street.}

{Tess just sent me these images she came across of my mom and one of me that my mom had written on...no clue why she has some of my family photos though...I think she's my biz partner/secret stalker... teehee :)) thanks for sharing, Tess!! My mom always loved you so much! Probably mostly because you can seriously put away Mex food with the best of us. Seriously, though. She is proud of you and I. Team TK-Ohhhhhh!}

I remember my mother's prayers and they have always followed me.  They have clung to me all my life.  ~Abraham Lincoln


Virginia Collinwood said...

Kimothy! This is beautiful. I, too, lost my Mom to cancer. It was ovarian cancer, and it took her away from us too early, but I know she is no longer in pain... and can still help us from where she is. She passed in 2003, at the age of 54. I was only 20. I miss her so much.


Hilary-Jane Hilton said...

I get choked up at this...what a beautiful tribute to your madre!

Lauren said...

Wow, this just made me cry. I can't wait to celebrate with you tonight! I know your mom is looking down as you, proud as ever.

Love you!!!

Post a Comment