I must admit this is the hardest post I’ve written in the four years I have been blogging. Why you ask? Because I’m dedicating this post to my mom who passed away on December 19, 2016. As all who knew her can attest, my mother was a special person; her passing was a great loss to many.
I’ve called my post Snow White for a variety of reasons. Reasons that I hope will become apparent as you continue to read. First of all, I think my mom resembled Snow White a bit, don’t you?
In addition to resembling Snow White, my mom had a special connection with the dwarfs, particularly Dopey. Now you are really intrigued, right? During one of my visits to my mom’s house while she was battling cancer, my mother insisted I search the attic in an effort to find her ‘Dopey’ doll. I searched high and wide sifting through wood trim and carpet samples, lots of trash, old toys, ancient Christmas decorations and multiple containers. Finally, hidden away in an old barrel, I found Dopey! As you can see he was a bit worse for wear, but my mother loved him just the same. She told me she won the Dopey doll when she attended the premier of ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ in the mid 1930’s. She was so excited to share this story because she said in her 86 years, she never won anything but Dopey.
|Mom’s Dopey Doll|
She continued her story, telling me that my cousins didn’t treat Dopey well and that’s why he had some injuries. The mice gnawed on his clothing, but it was my cousins who broke his marionette string, bruised his face and more. To me, Dopey’s condition didn’t matter. We all show wear as we age, right? Honestly, I don’t think my mom was concerned either. She was just happy he had been found.
At this point in the story you are probably wondering when I’m going to relate this story to gardening aren’t you? After all this is a gardening blog, right?
So back to Snow White. When winter comes, and covers our landscapes with snow, we relish the peaceful image. We love the calm of our trees and shrubs covered in the white stuff; we find ourselves relaxed in our homes, all cozied up by the fire. But despite the calm we see, I believe there is a lot going on underground. Under that cloak of winter are many miracles in the making. As Rumi said, the scene might look calm, but the ‘roots are down there riotous.’
I guess that’s how I picture my mom right now. She can’t be seen by me or others who loved her, but her presence is felt, and I’m sure there is quite a party going on where she is. After all, she was not only loved by those who were left behind, but also by those who went before.
Here’s to you mom. Love you, miss you and hope you are having a ‘riotous’ time in the gardens of heaven. Thanks for all the treasures you left behind in my life and in my landscape. Until we meet again…
Carol, your post is a thoughtful, loving tribute to your Mom. Be kind to yourself as you sort through the pieces of her wonderful life. Thank you for sharing the memories and the treasures you have come across. It has given an even richer view of your beautiful Mom and the relationship you shared. Sending hugs your way. Hope one of your visits to Arizona will afford us a chance to visit in person. Love, Teri
Beautiful, authentic and poignant writing Carol. Yes, I can see the resemblance between the two but far more importantly is the legacy of her life that she has left behind. Knowing there were tears falling as you wrote this blog, a heartfelt thanks for sharing part of her life with us.
Thanks Teri, I appreciate your taking the time to read my blog and to get to know my mom a little better. She was a special person and a woman who inspired me in many ways – including gardening!
Thanks John, you are right, her legacy is an important one. As a friend said to me…my mom will always be with me – the seeds of love will live on forever!
Carol: Thank you for sharing your experience of loss and the truly inspirational quote. Winter naturally can feel bleak for gardeners. But, with an eye toward lifting one's spirit, it may be possible to find glimpses of peacefulness, calm, and strength in a winter garden in unexpected places if we look for them. And our memories of seasons past can fill us up when all we can see are the voids. Gardens can truly provide solace and you can be sure Spring is on its way.
Thanks so much for your kind and beautiful words. I am finding signs of promise in the garden – snowdrops emerging, witch hazels blooming, hellebores budding…Spring and much needed garden therapy will be here soon.
Wonderful tribute to your mom. She was a very fine lady.
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