Live your life

I remember riding in the car with her. I’m not sure what we were doing that day but we were laughing and having a moment about something. Our laughter may have been about the hours she would take strolling through Walmart as I pushed a full basket of groceries in protest behind her almost every Saturday. She always wanted to make sure she had enough food in the house “just in case”. Or we were probably coming from a Doctor’s appointment where we spent time trying to explain aches and pains that accompanied her many strokes. I can’t remember the event but I do remember after a brief laugh shared between the two of us I mustered up enough courage to ask my question: “what will I do when you are gone”? We both paused. She looked out the window in search of her answer and I fought back my tears waiting for her response. I didn’t mean to change the mood in the car but I needed to know. I needed her to tell me what I was supposed to do when she was no longer here with me. Maybe my question was selfish. Centered around my own feelings of loss I knew I would have once she was gone.. I knew my question didn’t diminish my role as a mother to my own two daughters but my question was coming from a deep place of a daughter who one day would no longer have her own mom. I wanted her answer to prepare me for life without her. After a long pause she answered me “you will live your life Shelly”. That’s it I thought? Was that all she could say? It took a lot for me to ask my Mom that question. We had spent so much time together throughout my entire life so with her health quickly declining I wondered how much time we actually had left. But just as hard as it was for me to ask her that question  I would imagine it was hard for her to answer it as well. I knew then that her answer was full of genuine care and love for me. She wanted me to live my life. To be happy. To be loved.

Losing someone you love is never ever easy. I wish I would have been better prepared in a way for it to have been less painful.  But we are never prepared to let them go. We all wish we had one more day. One more touch. One last smile or the sound of their voices one last time.

Grief is painful and agonizing. Our lives have been changed forever.  It’s part of a process that you can’t explain. No matter what the circumstances are surrounding the loss we are never ready. We struggle hard to piece the fragments of our broken hearts  back together.

As I struggle to write this post 3 years after my mom’s death I wonder if I took her advice seriously.  Am I living my life? Is it full? Full of joy? Full of love? Am I truly loved? And do the people in my life truly feel loved by me? Would she smile at the woman I am growing to become? Would she feel good about this chapter of my life?

As you read this and struggle through your own personal journey of loss whether it’s brand new or happened years ago ask yourself how are you healing? How is the process going? Are you living your life? And what does that look like for you? Is your life full? Are you happy?  Are you surrounded with love and support and are you giving your  best love in return? After the most devastating loss the pain is still there but there is also a circumference of hope. With time you will be able to reinvent yourself but take your time and be patient in the process.   Be kind to your heart as you work through the grief and maneuver through your own personal healing. Everyone is different so don’t give up on yourself.

As time goes on you will be able to take the advise of my Mom and apply it to your own situation. Tell yourself kindly to “live your life”.


4 thoughts on “Live your life”

  1. Each word hit home with me, because I often wonder am I living? So to do as God would have us to do for we only get one life, I have started trusting God and living.. It feels good

  2. I had been there 11 years ago. I lost both my boys in a house fire. My 25yrs old son, who was expecting his first child & my 5yrs old grandson. I can certainly relate to your lost. Yet in the blood of Jesus Christ. I learn that death is our sins & Jesus’s life isn’t over, therefore my boys stories isnt over & neither your beloved mother.

    1. I have a friend who’s struggling with the loss of her son. It’s been a year and she’s finding it very hard to accept his death. Your words and thoughts about Living Your Life is what I would like to share with her. Very moving and powerful Michelle!

  3. Greif and despair is something I’ve dealt with were my Fathers horrific murder and about 12yrs later a boyfriend whom was killed in an Automobile accident very tragically. It took some time for me to get over but, I feel I’ve gotten over them both because I finally learned how to accept death and moved on with my life. Now I have became closer to my Mother since I moved back to Charlotte. She has helped me by stating numerous times, you are still here for a reason and your Daughters are looking up to you the same way you’re looking up to me and the same way She is looking up to my 90yr old Grandmother. To make a long story short, basically, we need to enjoy and embrace the love, and care from our Parent(s) while they’re here with us but live your life too. Mom said to me countless times, “You better live your life and worry less or it will make you sick in all types of ways”. Each of us handles this differently throughout our lives due to our age range but I must say, I don’t know what I would do without my Mother now that I am 46yrs old. Thank you for sharing your story, I really enjoyed reading them. You are Blessed and your Mother is your Angel.

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