Monday, November 05, 2007

The New Normal

Even when expected, death is so difficult to deal with. I have been able to go through my life relatively unscathed by grief. I was in my thirties before any family member or close friend died. My father died 24 years ago and I think about him all the time. Every time I take out a saw I remember "measure twice, cut once"! Why did it take so long for me to learn that lesson? I've reminisced about the way he helped nurture my budding textile interests and served as a willing model of gauge-gone-wild hats before. (There's that measuring problem again)

My mom passed away two weeks ago, coincidentally (or not) on the anniversary of my father's death. While we couldn't keep her at home during the last few months we did everything we could to honor her wishes and one of us was with her every day. I do feel good about that. Now the task is to redefine normal.

Sometimes, especially during the last few months, Mom would get a little confused, but never about Jackson! She always remembered his name and when he was born. How wonderful that she got to experience and share so much with her twelve grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Speaking of Jackson (and believe me, I can!), take a look at our youngest Trick-or-Treater!

There must be twenty of these shots and in each one he's looking more and more bored with the whole thing. Finally ....


  1. I'm so sorry for your loss. Your silence had me wondering about your Mom's situation. It is a new normal when your parents are gone. Wishing you much peace and comfort and sending a cyberhug.

  2. My condolences. I still have both of my parents, but lost my grandmother a few years ago. I now have a Singer treadle sewing machine similar to one she had, that was manufactured the year she was born. It's strangely meditative (like spinning!).
    Hugs to you as you find a new center.

  3. Charleen, I'm very sorry for your loss. Even when it is expected and an appropriate long life, that doesn't mean there isn't grief. I know your mother was well cared for and I hope my kids do as well by me when I get to that point.
    Jackson is quite handsome; love those eyes. I really appreciated the chuckle when I scrolled to the last picture.
    Hope you are well. We will have to try to do better next year about getting together. And yes, it will have to be next year - the rest of this one is already booked! How sick is that!?

  4. Delurking to say how very sorry I am for your loss. I can only imagine how difficult it has been for you and I wish you well as you adjust to the new normal. I do hope that the cute little froggy has helped to bring a smile to your face every now and again.

  5. I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. I was wondering if that was the reason you were quiet for this long. Hope that you and your family enjoy the good memories of her.

  6. I'm sorry to hear about this passing. It will take time, I know. The photo of her with the great grandbaby is priceless.
    Jackson is wonderful. The sequence of photos is perfect.

  7. I have been thinking of you. My condolences on your loss. And my thanks for the smile provided by the last picture in this entry.

  8. So sorry, Charleen, I had wondered how it was going with you. When my father died at 90 a few years ago, I was completely surprised by the loss, even though expected and natural. I am so glad you have Jackson in your life to provide a vibrant spark of life!

  9. Charleen, I am so sorry to hear about your mother! I know this has been though and that you miss her dearly.

  10. claudia k5:14 AM

    Sounds like you are finding solace with the ever-adorable Jackson. Such is life and death, and so it continues.
    Hugs to everyone!

  11. I'm sorry to read this Charleen. It is hard adjusting to the new normal. Go easy on yourself.