Posted on Feb 20, 2020 in Editorial.
When your mother died, you had a million things on your mind, none of which involved how much you never were able to ask her. But when all phone calls were made, funeral arrangements finalized, and the flowers were selected for the service, you had only a moment to think about and reflect upon the pain of losing your mother, your biggest supporter and closest confidant.
It was different when your father died–he was so sick that his death was welcomed, it ended his pain and suffering. You were also younger, in your 30s, and could comprehend the loss–it was his time. But you also had your mother to lean on. Sure, you supported her, as it was devastating to lose her partner of 52 years. But she was strong. Even stronger than you.
But as of late, she was aging and quickly. The twinkle in her eye fading, even seeing her great-grandchildren which once brought her joy, now seemed to drain her. You knew, deep in your heart, she was getting old, in the way that parents do. But you pushed it from your mind.
Now, holding onto faded black and white photographs to be scanned and made into a slideshow of memories for her viewing, can you see just how much you missed out on.
Shuffling through photo albums and boxes of mementos you have so many unanswered questions. Who were some of the people in the photographs? When did she take a trip to the islands? Where and when was this photo of your parents taken?
So many things you never knew about your own mother, with whom you thought you knew it all. Not only are these memories lost forever for you, but for your own children and grandchildren who will not have the chance to know the legacy of the woman who truly started it all.
As you sit on her rickety bed, the springs creaking beneath you, you can’t believe how much time was lost. Not just in the individual moments you were not with her, but in the memories you never got to share.
If you could go back in time, back before her health began to fail and the strain of age set into her weary bones, you would do it differently. You would capture all those moments. Take more photos. Listen more closely to the stories. Maybe even write some of them down.
If given the chance for a do-over, you would make sure that your mother’s story, though ordinary to some but extraordinary to you, was memorialized for future generations. It would be selfish in a way because now with her gone, you’d love to hear her voice, even just one more time. But it would be a gift that gives back for generations to come. Even surpassing your own lifetime.
If you are finding yourself wishing to hold onto these moments, wishing to create a story that will be shared and preserved for years to come, you need the service of LifeTime Private Autobiography.
You have regrets of not knowing your mother’s entire story. But you don’t have to let this become a cyclical process. Our bodies will fail, and our own lives will end. But you can keep the family legacy alive.