On Valentine's Day my mum passed away. My husband and I flew home to Ireland to lay her to rest and to celebrate her life. She loved a celebration, social events, hosting a party (gosh could she ever host a party), going to a party, cups of tea with just about anyone...
Mum had spent the last 11 weeks in hospital. Finally they let her come home. She returned to her beloved home in the afternoon, she Skyped with me and my siblings who were together in Toronto. My bother, SIL and my niece were with her, my nephew stopped in to visit, neighbours dropped in.
She looked beautiful in her navy suit, matching shoes and of course the ever present pearls. My niece told how, when she said "Gran, you look beautiful in your navy suit", mum replied..that's French Navy, to which my niece said..whats "French Navy?" and mum said..."It all the style now". At 88 she knew what was happening and loved to be up to date on the happenings of the world. She sat and watch the political debate for a couple of hours with my niece and nephew. Later as my nieces assisted her to get ready for bed she simple let a little "oh" escape her mouth and she was gone. Her heart just gave up the battle. But she was at home and that pleased her.
We held a "wake" at the house and took vigil of her over night. She had expressed that she did not wish to be left at the church alone over night. As always we did her bidding. Hundreds of her friends and family came to pay their respect to this feisty lady. Stories were shared, laughter permeated the house all day long. There were tears, both happy and sad.
The next day the church service was so beautiful, she had picked out her music (of course she had!!! LOL) and a family friend sang it accompanied by harp. My brother spoke of our mum, we cried, laughed and applauded. There was about 500 there to send her on her way. It was beautiful.
Mum, you inspire me to always fight through any pain like you did for so many years. To be a good friend. To have a kind heart. To be determined. To be generous. To know how to laugh from my belly. To fiercly love my family. To work hard and to mind my manners.
Words over heard at the memorial that described mum:
"A force to be reckoned with" "Great friend" "The best" "Loved life" "Loved to shop" "Elegant" "Stylish" "Funny" "Giggler" "She had the most beautiful skin" (Her secret...Pond's Cold Cream)
You were loved by so many, yes, you also drove us crazy, but we would not have changed a thing about you. Give dad a big hug from us. Rest now.