Tuesday, April 10, 2012

grief, worry, and why I take so many pictures


Easter was a really hard holiday this year. My mom's absence just pierced me to the core.

On the eve of Easter, Gary and I put the girls to bed as usual. I nursed Audrey to sleep and laid her gently down in her crib. And then Gary and I knelt at Juliet's bed and prayed our bedtime prayers with her, blowing kisses as the door shuts behind us.

Once the girls were asleep, I slipped away to the grocery store to pick up last minute items for the snacks I was bringing to my aunt's the next day. And my grief for my mom overwhelmed me. I sat in the parking lot of Albertson's by myself and wept. I collected myself enough to go in the store, but then found myself weeping as I walked down each aisle of that same store that my mom used to shop in for holidays so often.

I miss my mom. I want her here to watch my girls grow.I want her to delight in them and hold their chubby little hands. I want her here to tell me I'm doing a good job, that I'm a good mother and that she's proud of me.


I've been starting to have some aggravating carpal tunnel in my wrists. It's nothing to write about, except that my mom also suffered from carpal tunnel for several years. I have so much of my mother's genes in me and the carpal tunnel is just another reminder. I look in the mirror every day and I see the same deep crease between my eyebrows that my mom had in hers, until death came and smoothed her wrinkles all away. I worry that my body will betray me like hers did. I do not want to die my mother's death, nor do I want my children to ever go through what me and my sisters did.

why I take so many pictures:

Because my children are cute, of course. Every mother thinks that her children are far more adorable than any other child.

But also because I want these reminders that I am here, alive and happy with my children. And when I am someday gone, I want them to have piles and piles of photographs so that if they ever need a reminder, they will know that I loved them desperately, that I held them and cherished them and delighted in every moment of being their mother. 


  1. jen, for what it's worth, i think you are a great mom and i'm indescribably proud of you. love, s

  2. Echoing Samin - this is no replacement for a mother's words and support, but we all SO admire your beautiful family, your strength, and the life you have built. Your girls and Gary (and us!) are so blessed to have you.
    xoxo Linz