In 1952 my parents were married in Germany, two days before Christmas.
They were given this hand painted Irish linen table cloth and napkin set as a wedding gift.
The original paper tag and ribbon was still tied around it, the tissue paper crispy and yellowing, the box smelling slightly musty.
I've always admired it. During my visits home, I would often sneak a peak of it folded carefully in it's box in the dining room hutch. I loved to feel the weight of the silky smooth fabric between my fingers, and I liked the colors and the design. I have always wanted it, but could never bring myself to ask for it.Neither one of my parents could understand why I would be interested in "such an old thing". I couldn't understand why they weren't, and why my mom never used it. I would try to convince her to to take it out when she gave a luncheon for her lady friends. We have always been so different, she and I. Mommy only liked new, modern things.
Two years ago, way too soon, my mom passed away. Sometime later, my dad gave me the table cloth.
I couldn't take it out of the box, until today.
It reminded me too much of my mother, and how different we were, and how difficult it often was for us to understand each other.
It reminded me too much of how much I miss her, every day.
I don't know if I can use the table cloth, or if it will go back into it's box. But I do know in spite of our differences, my mother loved me and always wanted the best for me. And if I had gotten up the nerve to ask her for the pink box with the table cloth in it, she would have gladly given it to me. Because she always wanted me to be happy, and she taught me to live life fully, and to enjoy beautiful things. I know I will always miss my mom. And I will always treasure the table cloth, in or out of the box.
April 24, 2010:
Three years is a long time to live without a mom.
Even though I'm all grown up and a mother myself, I still feel like I need her.
People say it gets easier as time passes, and that may be true.
But occasionally I find myself tearing up at unexpected moments, remembering things about her that made me laugh, or a small, kind thing she'd do for me.
Occasionally I find myself thinking "I've got to call mommy and tell her about this".
Occasionally I find myself gazing at a photo of her, or trying to remember how her voice sounded, or I hear myself saying something she always said.
As I get older, I am starting to look more like her.
As I get older, I am starting to appreciate her more.
As I get older, I realize I will always miss her.
Three years, or any number of years at all, is a long time to live without her.
In memory of my Mother July 24, 1926 -April 25, 2007
Until next time