A candle is lit, one special to the occasion. Carefully placed next to a photo of my mother, it burns throughout the day. January 12th, like the past five years, is a day in remembrance. This day marks the sixth year since her death. There will always be the dull sadness that lingers when touched by death yet with each passing yearinstead of focusing on its sadness I choose to celebrate what I was so fortunate and blessed to have…. the love, the care, the joy of my mother. As noted in my book, Tending to My Wounds - Coping with Grief One Square at a Time, I created my own annual 'Obon' -- Debra's style -- a day spent in a harmonious arrangement of prayer and filling the day with the pleasing desires of my mother. A way to commemorate, providing me with a restful visual effect of remembrance.
This year… the day included a cup of tea using one of her favorite cups; walking through my garden tending to the plants transplanted from her garden, wearing her garden shoes. Taking rest in my sanctuary there is the lighting of incense, sending prayers for the departed souls of those I know and do not know; those in sickness, those near death. The warm sun comforts. Inside, the aroma that filled the kitchen was mom's made-from-scratch banana bread baked using the baking pans she used as far back as our childhood. It wasn't until I was removing the bread from the oven that I realized I had been humming songs she use to sing. Stopping for another cup of tea paying closer attention to the faded red cardinal design with lettering spelling Virginia. The morning turns to afternoon - my attire includes earrings mom gave me for my birthday and wearing one of her elephant bracelets she was fond of. We deliver some banana bread to dad. There, I take a walk through the somewhat tattered remains of mom's garden - remembering when while gathering a few tangerines. Dinner is at Toby's. I ate mom's usual - just like she ordered. A meatball sub… disassembled. The meatballs and sauce with the bread on the side. We reminisce as the stories bring laughter and joy. Our day would not be complete until we have a "mango madness" toast -- one of her favorite cocktails. Sitting by candlelight at the patio table that until recently resided at mom's house, we make a toast to mom, to life, her life and the beauty and blessing she so loving gave. Thinking of you and missing you dearly. Happy Mother's Day with love!
© 2013 Debra S. Walling - EAT DRINK CREATE BE MERRY, Nourishment for the Body, Mind and Soul