It’s been 14 years since she left. It’s like a lifetime ago and yesterday at the same time. The loss of my mother was indescribable. We never had a traditional relationship. As I grew older, our roles were very much reversed, but even still, missing one’s mother (for lack of a better word) is hard . . . plain and simple.

Sometimes I wonder, what is it exactly that I miss? Of course, I miss talking to her. I miss how she drove me crazy. I miss her baking. I miss hearing about her newest needlepoint. I miss when she botched the names of the boy bands from my generation and would cringe when she wanted to hear Boyz II Men, “I’ll Make Love to You,” (love the song, but gag that mom loved it more).

But most of all, I miss what could have been. The grandma she could have been to my boys. The relationship we could have had. The things we could have done. The talks we could have had. It is hard for a young woman in her 20s to live without her mother even if her mother wasn’t something straight out of a Hallmark movie. Even if that mother had a hard life. Even if that mother was divorced. Even if that mother’s relationship with her kids was sometimes strained. Even if that mother sometimes leaned on her kids more than her kids could lean on her. Even if that mother made mistakes. I make mistakes, we all do.

RELATED: The Day She Dies

To be a young wife and mom in my 20s without a mother of my own felt lonely and empty. In my 40s, sometimes it still does. I’m a motherless daughter and a motherless mother. It hurts on the anniversary of her passing. It hurts on Mother’s Day. It hurts on her birthday (which is my birthday too). It hurts on some random days in between too. Sometimes Frankie Valli comes on the radio, and I get choked up and it hurts.

So, on a day like today, the first day of school for my kidskids she would have adored and doted onand the 14th anniversary of her passing, I struggle with how to feel as everyone grieves differently. I wonder what I should be doing, like if I should be doing something grand in her memory. And although she was a little extra, she was not an over-the-top kind of gal. She liked what she liked.

RELATED: Don’t Take Your Mom For Granted—I’d Give Anything to Have Mine Back

So, after everyone was settled and needed nothing from me, I went out for a run, listening to good music as a way to remember that I am thankful for the active and healthy body the Lord has blessed me with. Then after dinner, I decided my boys should have ice cream sundaes and watch one of her favorite movies with me if they wanted to. I told them that Grandma would have loved to treat them to ice cream if she was alive today.

And now I lie here in my bed writing about her, knowing she would want me to write and that she would be proud of the person I am today. She would be proud of my sister. She would be proud of our husbands, and most of all, she would be so dang proud and in love with her grandkids and overjoyed that there are 11 of them now. That thought just fills my eyes with tears. But it is true. And every year that goes by, I will keep on building a legacy for my family based on my Lord and Savior, and I will remember my mom and take comfort in my God who sustains me through all things.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Cari Resnick

I am a wife to my firefighter husband and mom to three growing boys (two teens and a tween), one rescue pup, and two rescue cats. I’ve wanted to be a writer since the third grade. In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, blogging, card making, running, hiking, walking, cooking, going to the dog park, and spending time with my family and friends. I have published two books, Loving You, A Journey Through Forever, co-authored with my sister, and a collection of Poetry titled, The Lord is Good, Poetry, Prayers, and Reflections. I also have stories and poetry in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Just for Teenagers, Mother’s of Angels, Mother’s of Angels Two, In Celebration of Sisters, and Soaring High. You can find me at lifeasafirewife.com or on Instagram at cari.resnick07.

I Didn’t Just Lose My Mom the Day She Died

In: Grief, Loss
Man hugging woman on the beach in nostalgic photo

I didn’t just lose her the day she died, I’ve lost her many times over the years. I lost her in aisle five at the grocery store all over again when I looked down and saw the smoothie packet I would buy for her when she was too sick to keep anything else down. I lost her the day I gave birth to my first son and the room was filled with so many people but she was missing; it wasn’t completely full because she wasn’t there—and again with my second and third sons. I lost her the day I...

Keep Reading

I Miss the Little Moments with My Mom the Most

In: Grief, Grown Children, Loss
Woman sitting on floor by couch looking sad

You think it’s going to be the big holidays that are hard. The first Thanksgiving without her. The first Christmas. Maybe even her birthday. But it’s not the big days that bring you to your knees. It’s all the little moments in between. It’s cooking a family recipe and not being able to call her to ask a question about the directions. It’s looking down and realizing you’re using the Tupperware you stole from her and knowing you can’t return it even if you wanted to. RELATED: My Mom is Never Coming Back To Get Her Shoes It’s talking about...

Keep Reading

My Birthday Will Never Be the Same without My Mother

In: Grief
Mother and two daughters, older color photo

It’s been eight months since my mom took her last breath on earth and entered into her eternal resting place. Eight, long, motherless months. I expected holidays to be hard, as they should, because a piece of the family is missing. The spot where they once sat, ate, laughed, took pictures, and made memories is now empty. Just like a piece of my heart is empty. RELATED: I Didn’t Just Lose My Mom the Day She Died The holiday no one prepared me for was my birthday. A day that’s to be celebrated. It’s the day I took my first...

Keep Reading