I walked laps around my parents’ neighborhood, looking, hoping, praying for a sign…pleading for a miracle I still so naively thought would come. I soaked in the lyrics of the songs coursing through my headphones…saw a deer, saw a rainbow, saw a hummingbird…but what good are signs if they’re not confirming the hopes and expectations of my heart? What good are signs if they aren’t the answers to my specific prayers?

No one ever told me parents die one day. I mean, sure, I had that fear earlier in life, but since they kept waking up day after day and year after year, when the morning finally came on June 20th, ten years ago when my mom did not wake up, even as a 42 year old woman, even as someone who had laid my own son to rest…even as a theologian who had mega faith and, as I said, still naively thought maybe there was a chance my mom wasn’t on the brink of death from cancer but on the precipice of one of those miracles we all hope and wish for…even the fact that my mom died, was unbelievable, inconceivable…unacceptable.

Some moms rock. Some suck. My mom was awesome.

Some years I wanted to be just like her, other years I was figuring out how to be so uniquely my own, it mattered to me to keep myself a tad distanced. It wasn’t “at” her as much as it was “for” me.

Bird’s nests aren’t made for adult birds but eggs and fledglings.

I miss my mom. I miss both of my parents…my dad not lasting long without the love of his life. We became dear friends almost 22 years ago once I became a mom…something about that knee deep experience of delivery and realizing how much my parents had loved me when I met our firstborn changed how we interacted.

Bad theology tried to convince me my prayers weren’t answered because:

  • if we had had more people praying, God would have heard our prayers.
  • I/she didn’t have enough faith.
  • There was “sin” in my life, so God’s reception to anything I had to say was staticky.

Bad human messaging projected that my mom died because:

  • She didn’t eat enough green food.
  • She didn’t exercise enough.
  • She had negative thought patterns.

People die. Like every single one of us. All 8 billion people on this earth will die…none of us gets out of here alive. There’s a 100% chance of it. Making peace with death was what Noah’s and my mom’s death made me do, while also reminding me that life is about living, not dying.

I believe that’s why Jesus focused his messaging on the living part…he was convinced of it, too. The joys of presence, connection, intention…the awes and wonders of the day to day, instead of being so spiritual we’re no earthly good. Instead of trying to scare the shit out of people with doomsday messaging, bad theology, and fear mongering, Jesus offered Good News. Good News.

My mom knew that news…she knew it in every fiber of her being. As a designer and the wife of a builder, she had metaphorically deconstructed the institutional conditioning of her faith, before it was hashtag trending, to live with a perspective that celebrated the here and now and hoped for more than met the eye.

Anyway, whatever.

I don’t have profound thoughts today on this 10th anniversary of wishing my mom was physically present to keep getting to know her and for her to relish in how awesome my kids are or how cool the house is that I designed as a result of being her offspring. I miss her everyday, not just on this particular 10th anniversary of her death.

It’s hard to reconcile, no matter how old we grow, being on earth without our grown-ups. Today just reminds me I’ve been without my favorite one for 10 years. I know many of you have lost one of your parents or are in the throes of caring for them as they age. I’m really am sorry. I’m sorry for your heartache, frustration, pain, sadness…grief. All of it. All the feels are real and valid and not wrong, as there’s no one right way to grieve.

I know it’s not the end as I feel my mom’s presence in my life daily… I’m part of her and she’s part of me. But, it doesn’t mean I don’t still wish she and I were playing Scrabble or sitting at either of our sewing machines, creating something beautiful together.

I love you, Bebe.


Boo Boo


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