This is one of those posts that I’ve typed and deleted at least 10 times over the last week. My mom passed away from bladder cancer last Monday, June 25. Typing that makes it feel more real, so maybe that is part of the reason why I’ve found it so hard to do. She went quietly, in her sleep, in my sister’s home in Portland, Oregon. She was 59.
I took the photo, above, on a walk through my sister’s neighborhood, earlier last month. M and I flew to Oregon the day after my birthday and I’ve spent the last couple of weeks since we’ve been home going through these photographs trying to process it all.
It’s funny how people get stuck in our memories. I left home at 14 for boarding school and never really spent any significant amount of time there after, so in my mind, my mom is still 38. She’s wearing giant tinted sunglasses, red lipstick, skinny Bongo jeans, cracking jokes and flirting with any guy within speaking distance. I spent a lot of my childhood being painfully embarassed by my young, loud, dramatic mother. She wasn’t always the easiest person to get along with and our relationship was never an easy one, but she was never boring. I’d like to think that this is the way she would want me to remember her. Young, vibrant, bright eyes and big hand motions, telling some wild, over the top, only partially true story. The life of the party.