Today my mommy would have been 55 years old. Often mistaken as my sister I am quite sure she still would not have looked her age.

She was life.

When I was unsure of what was the next step in my own here she comes to speak life into me to remind me of how amazing and wonderful I was. She always believed in me no matter what I wanted to do for myself. She knew. Whatever I set my mind to do I could do.

She was love.

The gentle way she would handle those that were willing to accept her love brought a smile to their faces. I couldn’t get past who she used to be to accept that everyone changes for the better to appreciate the love she gave to the Bostonians she got close to. But when people remember her they remember her giving spirit, her loving disposition.

She was laughter.

She would spend time putting together quips and jokes to make us laugh. She lived to love to see a smile on the faces of those she knew so she kept the good times rolling. Often times I would meet up with her just to head over to Whole Foods or Marshalls to make up for the time I took for granted in my teens. She was a riot.

She was the life of the party.

My grandma says she and my father would ride in his drop top her blonde Afro peaking out the top to the party of their choosing where they would tear up the dance floor not getting off until the lights came on. Their joy was infectious, and the fun was contagious. Everyone was trying to catch on. She taught me to step just so we could create our own party at home when she felt like doing her two step and no one else could keep up with her.

She is me.

See rarely allowing me to let another get close to me made me mamas baby. As she rested in her hospice bed she clapped her hands together as if to say chop, chop. So I immediately go to her to see what she needs. She asks me to perform. Since the pieces arent connecting, I’m looking puzzled. She says it again, with strength and determination.

So I do.

Six minutes of poetry later she looks pleased and says.

“Now show me you can do more with your life besides drinking and smoking it away.”

The perk of being my best friend meant I hid nothing from her. I mean I never really needed women in my life when I had my mommy. Regardless to how I lived my life she was always my biggest fan.

So I will. I grabbed her hand and promised her I would be okay. She could let go now, since I would be okay.

And I am.

I spent the Eve of her birthday laughing to comedic hilarity, socializing with someone who shares the same birthday as me often throughout the night saying or doing what I was about to say and do before I did.

I decided not to focus on what wasn’t, or who wasn’t and just enjoy.

Life is for the living. It is meant to be lived right?

So to my monny. I can’t complain about you not being here because the time I had with you far exceeded any expectation. The pain of the past becomes a distant memory when you begin to enjoy what’s in front of you. Letting go of fear to find a sobering state of mind. Yes. I will perform. The role I have been given is Radiance’s life. Who better to play this part than I.

So happy birthday mummy as the New Englanders call mothers. You’d be surprised by the changes I’ve made and the beautiful and smart granddaughter you never got to meet. We are happy and well, carrying on the things you placed within.

So the drinking and smoking which was once my anchor is no longer. After I left the poetry set Saturday night the chorus just came and the poem followed shortly. Ignoring the urging of the man sitting next to me to continue singing I wrote to perform.

Because I will. Be everything God called me to be. Thankful for what I’ve been given and what I’ve learned. Thankful for the mother who negated the negativity that flourished around me. She was a class in and of itself.

That’s why I live today to never fit in but to stand out apart and if that’s alone so be it. Its better to stand in approval of God than man any day.

So cheers. To a class act in a world where she brought the grace. I’m thankful she was the woman who raised me. Forever dearly loved her memory can never be erased!

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