Thursday, October 4, 2012

{another life well lived}

mom 
i love you mom

mom {a life well lived}

If I lacked the words a few weeks ago to write about my dad, there are even fewer now. Just three weeks and 20 hours after my dad passed away, my mom took her last breath in this world and her first in the next. I had the special privilege of keeping vigil by her bedside the last three days of her life, and of taking care of her since Fred (that's what she named the tumor and its side effects) made his first appearance on February 9th. My mom was one of those amazing few who could take on the trials of life with faith and a smile, and light up a room while she was at it. There won't be a day that goes by that I will not miss the million little things I loved about my mom. She was and is one of God's greatest gifts to me.

mom {a life well lived}

mom
circa 1955

mom {a life well lived}

mom {a life well lived}

mom & dad
08.25.1973

mom {a life well lived}

mom {a life well lived}
our family
circa 1981

mom {a life well lived}
mom & the girls

mom {a life well lived}
mom & me

mom {a life well lived}
mom & my sister

mom {a life well lived}
Easter

mom {a life well lived}
totem pole of sass

mom {a life well lived}
complete zeal for life

mom {a life well lived}
mom bred cockapoos for 10 years

mom {a life well lived}
xoxo

mom {a life well lived}
our family
circa 2009

mom {a life well lived}
mom with 3 out of 4 kids

mom {a life well lived}
mom & dad on halloween

mom {a life well lived}
my parents

mom {a life well lived}
mom & dad
January 2012

mom {a life well lived}
"Fred" the brain tumor
February 2012

mom {a life well lived}
just before mom's brain surgery
March 2012

mom {a life well lived}


mom {a life well lived}
learning how to walk again
mom & torrey

mom {a life well lived}
my parents with all of their grandkids
April 2012

mom {a life well lived}
team jackie shirts
"My biggest problem is that the left part of my brain has nothing right in it
and the right part of my brain has nothing left in it."

mom {a life well lived}
opposites attract

mom {a life well lived}
beautiful as ever

mom {a life well lived}
the night of mom's first seizure

mom {a life well lived}
one of many MRIs

mom {a life well lived}
after mom woke up from her six day coma

mom {a life well lived}
hanging with mom in rehab

mom {a life well lived}
emma loaning her hair to grum

mom {a life well lived}
hanging at oncology

mom {a life well lived}

mom & dad on their 39th anniversary
08.25.2012

mom {a life well lived}


mom {a life well lived}
visiting dad in the hospital
August 2012

mom {a life well lived}
Stan reading Scripture to mom

mom {a life well lived}
so close

mom {a life well lived}
mom's very last smile
09.24.12

mom {a life well lived}

mom's last day

mom {a life well lived}

I have read this particular essay titled, "The Advantages of Having One Leg", several times over the past nine months. The closing paragraph (below) strikes me each time with a reminder to love as if everything might be lost. If I had this year to live over again, I would take it all on again only with a little more grace and, of course, for much much longer.

All pessimism has a secret optimism for its object. All surrender of life, all denial of pleasure, all darkness, all austerity, all desolation has for its real aim this separation of something so that it may be poignantly and perfectly enjoyed. I feel grateful for the slight sprain which has introduced this mysterious and fascinating division between one of my feet and the other. The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost. In one of my feet I can feel how strong and splendid a foot is; in the other I can realize how very much otherwise it might have been. The moral of the thing is wholly exhilarating. This world and all our powers in it are fare more awful and beautiful than even we know until some accident reminds us. If you wish to perceive that limitless felicity, limit yourself if only for a moment. If you wish to realize how fearfully and wonderfully God's image is made, stand on one leg. If you want to realize the splendid vision of all visible things - wink the other eye.

G.K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles

prayer of st francis 

Today would have been my mom's 60th birthday.
i miss you, mommy.

16 comments:

Crafti (Rachelle) said...

Noel,

I am so sorry for the lost of your Father and Mother.

We do not know each other, but I have followed and admired your work. I have been checking in to see how your family is doing and am very saddened to hear of your father and mother passing. Reading your blog I've admired your beautiful work and lovely pictures and your sense of humor the love in your family and most of all the love of God.

Prayers for all of you. May God bless and keep you.
Hugs
Rachelle

Jessica said...

Noel-
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

We don't know each other either, but I have been following your blog for some time as I enjoy your work and seeing your beautiful photos. I also enjoy reading about your faith and the wonderful quotes you post.

May God bless you with peace in the days and weeks ahead.

Hugs and prayers,
Jessica

crazymom said...

I have read your blog for years and know you are an amazing woman of faith. You have inspired me in so many ways. I have prayed for your family thru this difficult time and I am so sad to hear of your incredible loss. I will continue to pray for your sweet family at this most difficult time. Our God is Awesome! You are so blessed with an incredible husband and 2 beautiful girls.

jknapp00 said...

Oh, my, I just can't even imagine how you must be feeling right now. I lost my dad two years ago and that was just heart-rending. And then to lose your mom so soon after must be a knock out blow. At least you have the knowledge that they are together again and that you will one day see them again in heaven. Bless you and your family - I will keep you in my prayers.

Michelle said...

Oh Noel, I am so so sorry!! You, Stan, the girls and the rest of your family are in my thoughts. {{{hugs}}}

Anonymous said...

Noel, I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my dad 2 years ago, far too young, as it was with your dad and mom.
I know you will continue to love and cherish your husband and girls every day; there can be no greater tribute to your parents than to continue the love they gave to you.

Linda E said...

Wow, Noel. I don't know what drew me to your blog today but I felt the need to check in on you. Maybe it was your mom sitting on my shoulder, suggesting that you need a kind word. I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my dad to cancer 14 years ago when my daughter was only 3 weeks old. I know how hard it can be. I hope you find strength and solace in your memories and the love of your family. My prayers are with you all today. Thank you so much for sharing your mom and dad's story over they last year. They are truly remarkable and inspirational people.

Betty said...

So sorry for your losses. Stay strong.

Sylvie said...

I am so sorry for your loss...it seems I wrote a comment on the passing of your dad not long ago. I can't even imagine what you are going through, you and your family, but I do send you courage and offer you my deepest sympaties.

I have always thought, since a young child, that people who pass away became angels. So two more angels to watch over you and your family. Sylvie

Traci (CecilysMom) said...

Noel, I am so sorry for your loss. Your mom and dad sound like really good people. You and your family are in my prayers.

Terri C said...

Noel, I stumbled on your blog from a link on TwoPeas. My eyes are filled with tears, but the joy of your parents shines thru. The love of your family is so obvious. The sense of humor in the photos is wonderful. I so admire your mother. She fought with everything in her and understood "the gift" of appreciation of the beauty of life that God gives those who face the end of this life on earth. I know you fill find comfort in your memories of such happy times with your Mom and Dad.

Terri

Lynn L said...

I am so sorry for your losses this fall! I am glad that your parents are together in heaven. From the looks of the pictures...they belong together forever!! I will pray for you and your family as you grieve. You have my deepest sympathies.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry for the loss of your parents. {hugs}

Kristin said...

Noel,
I am so sorry for your loss. This post was an absolute beautiful tribute to your mom. I am so glad I found your blog at Sb.com. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Natalie said...

Dearest Noel,
I am so sorry for your loss. Your words about both of your parents are so beautiful.
God bless,
Natalie

Chark said...

Bless your heart with peace and lovely memories. I know your mom was well-loved and for a mother, there is nothing better in this world. She was a lucky woman and you carry her in your heart forever...just like she carried you in hers. How difficult this season must be, but loving is always worth the pain...hugs to your whole family.

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