Monday, June 2, 2008

Why wait?

Why is it we wait until too late to realize the important things? You know,those things we think but never say. Why is it that it takes death knocking on the door for us to say the important things? I'm talking about the things we think but don't vocalize.

Here's some examples:

My sister - Mother would tell me how smart Sister is. She would go on and on about how gifted Sister is with kids. Especially the more troubled pre-teens. What a gift she would say. She would also tell me about how great a salesperson she is. And how so very proud she was of Sister. They may not see eye to eye on most things, but there was never any doubt in my mind of her love for Sister. Yet, it took Mother's diagnoises of cancer for them to come back together.

Aunt #1 - Aunt1 passed away a few years ago after fighting cancer. I don't know if Mother ever got to tell her how much Mother admired her. The ability she had to raise such a large family of her own and those she fostered. The smoothness with which she could glide over the dance floor. The ability to really listen. Mother admired all of that.

Aunt#2 - Mother really thought this sister of hers was very smart. Her ability with numbers was amazing to Mother. She admired her business sense and her dedication to her family.

Aunt#3 - This sister was closest to Mother in age and probably the one that Mother admired most. She has a heart bigger than the world and Mother also felt she is such a shrewd, smart business person. Mother always felt Aunt3 was beautiful - inside and out.

Aunt#4 - Mother's youngest sister. There's several years between them, but Mother was proud of her. Proud of her faith, proud of her wonderful creativity. Her ambition and zest for life Mother was also proud of.

Her Mother - Mother always went on about how strong her Mother was. How she could decorate a house so cute on very little money. How brave she was.

I don't know if Mother ever conveyed to these people how much she thought of them, or the things she admired about them. Probably, if she did, she waited until this past year to do it. After all, isn't that what we did to her? Wait to tell her the things we thought we great about her? Did she realize that what I thought was great about her is what she saw in her own family? That she had those same traits, yet couldn't see them in herself?

If you're wondering what she thought about me, she told me. She told me a few years ago at the same time I told her. We were going through a rough family time and I really wasn't certain we would be talking to each other much in the future, if at all. I wanted her to know what I saw in her - the good. The beauty, the business smarts, the giving heart, the strength, the bravery, the creativity and the whole goodness of her. Yes, I knew about the bad - we both did. There's no need in this life to bring up the bad. If it's happened, then it's the past. Period. Where you go from there is choice.

So, what did Mom see in me? Everything good I saw in her, multiplied times ten. Everything that I have trouble seeing in myself.

Stop seeing the bad, look for the good. Even if you have to look hard, look. Then tell them them the good. Today. Now. Don't wait for the chance to be taken away from you. They need to hear it and you need to say it.

Take care - Me


Marcus said...

FIne. I shall stop looking at your "bad" - the horrifyingly infrequent blog updates - and focus on the amazing - the fact that you can live NEXT DOOR to your in-laws and not be in an insane asylum yet. Or suicidal. That's a remarkable skill.

tlm said...

I appreciate the reminder. We should all take your advice.

While I'm sure I haven't even told you everything that I should, that is a private conversation. Here, I will say this: You have your own key to my home, you've heard my darkest secrets, and my children call you "Aunt." You are not my sister by birth, but by choice - and I am glad!

I love you dearly, and would do anything for you, anytime you asked.

Camille said...

Thank you for this. I believe we all need a reminder every once in awhile. We get so wrapped up in our daily lives, that we forget how much this would mean to someone, or even ourselves.

I know you know how I feel about you, but once again, you are one of the bravest, most creative, genuine people that I choose to share this life with and I thank you for that.