A short time ago I posted The Going. At that time my Aunt had just passed away and my heart was aching for a woman I had loved for all of my life. However, I was unable to attend the memorial and my cousin sent me this eulogy that she had written for her mother.
She has given me permission to post it here and I am doing so to honour my Aunt and also my Cousin whose words touched my heart with a caress so that I would not be in so much pain over the loss of her mother.
MY MOM'S HANDS AND WHAT SHE MEANT TO ME
The journey that my mom's hands have had.
In her 91 years, I can only imagine how many lives she has touched in some way with her hands and her heart, and how weathered both were.
She didn't like her hands, she thought they were farm hands. She thought they were big and ugly....I never saw them as that instead this is what I thought of her hands:
I wonder when she was young:
How many white shirts she ironed
How many chores she did before she could go out to play with the boys in the street when she was growing up.
How many pies she made
How many pinwheels so sprinkled sugar and cinnamon on
How many pans of broken window glass she made
How many cookies she baked
How many potatoes she peeled for Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter Dinner.
How many toques she knitted for the homeless (I think one year she made 50)
How many sock monkey's did she make
How many scarves, mitts, socks and shawls. Every stitch was so perfect.
How many quilts she made
How many afghans and how many lace table cloths.
How many times she held my hand as we skipped down the street, or played in the revolving doors at The Bay.
How much wood she chopped
How many times she set up a tent when she was camping
How many times she brushed Barney (our dog)
How many times she brushed my hair when I was young (then my husband took over).
How many weeds she pulled in the garden and how many flowers she planted.
How many books she read and then re-read. She loved to read.
I wonder: How many letters and Christmas cards she wrote to friends and family.
I wonder: How many little hands she held (I remember her trying to grab my hand when I was playing in the dress racks with my cousin).
I wonder: How many ‘once upon a time’ stories she told about little Jimmy and Harry.
I wonder: How many tears she shed and how many tears she wiped away off a loved one’s face.
I wonder: How many songs she sung and how many times she played the piano and organ.
I wonder: How she was so crafty. She loved to knit, crochet, paint, needlepoint, do lapidary (rocks), leatherwork, and frig towels.
I wonder: How many times she was stung by the bees in her beehives in Salmon Arm (or was that just my dad that got stung..she bought my dad a bee-suite so he could help her)
I wonder: How many games she won (and how often she cheated!) She did like to play Craps (or 10,000), spoons, Mexican train, Take 5, Skatt, Go Fish, Pit and so many more. Did you know she was pretty good at playing pool, bocchi ball, and
lawn bowling too?
I wonder: How many times she hugged us, or wished she had hugged us more.
End of Part One