Today is my mothers birthday. I will never forget it and I never did before because it’s so close to my own. Maybe that’s why we were the closest in the family, I don’t know. But now it’s a day of remembrance instead of celebration. How do we make the change back to celebration?
El Día de Los Muertos is a day that I have grown to respect and think of a lot. Why is it that we do not celebrate the lives that we were blessed to have in our own. Sometimes I can be sitting at my desk and suddenly have the strong odor of cigarettes surrounding me. No one in my current family smokes and I can’t tell you when the last time a cigarette was in the house but my Father smoked when I was younger. There are also times that I can smell my mothers’ illness. For anyone that taken care of someone that is ill, they know that the person has a fragrance that comes over them. It’s not a normal smell but it’s not horrible either, it’s just what we realize is their illness. When it happens, it’s comforting to me for some reason while the smell of cigarette smoke just kind of freaks me out. I was seven when my Father past so I don’t have many memories of him, just like remembered feelings, it’s weird I know.
Today I find sadness coming over me and I don’t want it to. My mother would not want me to be sad for her. She is out of pain and hopefully with family. I want to remember and celebrate her for the amazingly strong woman that she was while here on this earth. If I am ever a quarter of who she was here, I would have accomplished amazing things in life. Not that she had material things but that she didn’t care about them and gave all she had to anyone in need, especially children. Yes, anyone with seven children would have to have a soft spot for them. It’s all she said she ever wanted in life was to have children. Then when her own children grew up, she started to care for other children and they were blessed to have experienced her.
This is what I want to celebrate, life! Her life meant so much to others and all she gave was all she had. We experienced so much with literally nothing but we never knew any different. Sure when we got a bit older, we would want things, but we learned that if you want something then it is not needed and you need to work if you want it. I still to this day know the difference between need an want and am teaching that to my granddaughter. Is that the celebration of her life? Am I celebrating each day instead by passing down what she taught me? Or would I be honoring her by doing this? Are they one and the same or different, I don’t know and I’m confused now.
I can’t visit her final resting as it’s over 1,000 miles away so I cannot do as they do for El Día de Los Muertos exactly. So how would I do something like that here? I truly think I’m on the right path with this though, just have to figure it out.