My last lesson from my Mom was on the day she died:
All through out my life, I was always close with both of my parents. But, my Mom was my friend – we shopped and cooked together all the time. She and I would spend time together and there was never a lapse in our conversations, it just flowed from topic to topic. As I became an adult and ventured out into the world, my Mom was my greatest supporter, always cheering me on.
But the one thing I never got from my Mom when I went to her with my “whoas” of a tough day was an “awww, poor Patti!” NEVER…. not once! No matter what life dealt me, even breakups from cheating boyfriends or lost business deals. But, she did have a standard answer for me in my times of stress. She always told “oh Patti, just suck it up!! You’re stronger and better than that!” Huh??? Are you kidding me? Not even a little “oh that’s too bad”?
The funny part is that she always had tremendous sympathy for the difficult events in the lives of my siblings. I used to sit as she sympathized that my “poor brother had to drive to Boston for work once a week”. Amateur!! I drove to Boston almost every day for work. And when I wasn’t driving to Boston, I was driving to other parts of Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut or NYC. I guess she saw this as her daughter leading an exciting life that she never had??
I must tell you that it always drove me crazy to hear her tell me over and over throughout the years to “suck it up”. Over the last five years, my dear friend Jerry always got a chuckle out of hearing that Mom had dished out her famous advice yet one more time to me!! (Or maybe he was chuckling at how it drove me nuts!!??) Then on July 1st, we received the news that her recent congestive heart failure was affecting her kidneys, and their function had greatly declined. She knew what that meant, and opted not to do dialysis. We took her to my sisters’ home along the seashore, and took care of her for the next week until she peacefully passed away.
That night I went home and sat on my bed so distraught at the loss of my Mom and best friend. Through my tears I finally got it!! Eureka!! It all finally made sense why my Mom didn’t coddle me. She was doing her job by making me strong for the day when she wouldn’t be here for me to talk to. It all finally was so clear. And my next thought to myself was her message from heaven, “oh Patti, just suck it up!”
Thank you Mom!! I finally get it. You truly were the best!!
During her last week, my Mom and I discussed many things. One thing we did discuss was my life without her. And yes, she had some words of wisdom for that also!! What you ask…well that’s for next time. Stay tuned!
Thanks for reading,