This weekend is Mother’s Day – can you believe it? Ordinarily I wouldn’t be feeling rather somber but we’re laying to rest my mother in law, Sarah, this weekend.
We just arrived in Boston for the service – If you’re wondering, Sarah had a private burial this fall but this weekend is for everyone else who knew her. She was an amazing woman with such a colorful life. She built a multi-million dollar company in Boston from the ground up, contributed to several charities and philanthropic groups, and played a mean game of golf. She loved going to Atlantis every year, adored Paris, and traveled the world over. She was one of the most generous individuals I’ve ever known, and had the same love of well-made handbags I do (how we bonded). Life without her has been a transition for everyone who knew her, but I am so grateful her death was swift and without prolonged suffering – as morbid as that sounds. As a critical care nurse (and any would agree), having a family that honors your end of life wishes and a death without suffering or pain is indeed a blessing. This weekend will be emotional but beautiful all the same. We will finally put her memory to rest and embrace her life with everyone in love.
Sarah passed away this fall rather suddenly from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma + HLH. Within days of her diagnosis she was gone, I’d never seen anything quite like it. Although it seems rather abrupt, and it was, I couldn’t have prayed for a more swift passing. Cancer especially can be an unforgiving disease full of pain and torment for both the patient and the family. To pass surrounded by your loved ones holding your hand and whispering sweet goodbyes is a blessing not afforded to all of us.
Sarah was one of the most influential and intelligent women I’ve had the pleasure of knowing. The University of Pennsylvania, where she both attended and contributed, deemed her as “intellectually curious” with a hallmark interest in humanity and interweaving just about any part of life within it. She was dynamite in everything she did – especially in the world of business. She had a knack for commanding an audience with both a fierce tenacity and incredible kindness. I imagine her now reunited with her parents, fishing off the Atlantic coast for marlin. My one regret is she will never know her grandchildren – my sister in law is currently pregnant and Sarah absolutely could not wait to have grandchildren. I have no doubt Sarah is thrilled beyond measure up above! She is so dearly missed.
My mother, now, is one of my best friends. While we most certainly did NOT see eye to eye more often than not in my younger years, she always had faith in me and my future. I mentioned her in my sheroes post but I can never say enough what an impact she has had in the woman I’ve become. My mother is a gracious woman. She is selfless to the point of me having to tell her to sometimes be selfish and think of herself. For so long she has put everyone and everything ahead of her own needs – and often without gratitude, which I think by definition, is the meaning of the word “Mom.” I know wholeheartedly both my brother and I would be lost without her.
I’m fortunate to have a mother as accepting and loving as mom. Whether it’s my depression or my current hair color – my mom embraces the person I am or at least has the grace to smile at my pink hair! Happy Mother’s Day to all you incredible ladies out there or the ladies in your life. You brought us into this world and at minimum deserve our gratitude for this chance at life.
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