Has it really been three Mother’s Days without my mother? This is what I asked myself earlier this week when I realized that many of the things I have been dreaming of were coming true. I booked my first magazine feature, I started auditioning for film and television again (my last audition was right before my mother passed) and I am on the brink of a huge change (more on this coming soon). However most importantly, I am living the life I prayed I would be able to live after my mom passed.
The joy is overflowing and I tear up just thinking of the days when I thought this feeling would never be possible without my favorite person here on earth with me.
Yes, there are still rough days. Days where I still can’t believe that I am motherless. However the fearless life that loosing my mother has required me to live has been so gratifying.
It is true what they say about the grief never getting easier.
It is also true that you get stronger.
So while things are on the up and up this year, I wanted to share the three things that have made the last three years not only bearable, but unbelievable.
Of course I made this black dress yesterday while thinking of these things, and per usual, the gems that I’ve refashioned my life with after loss all revealed themselves one stitch at a time.
Don’t Rush The Process
Just like I was one to make an entire dress the day of the event I planned to wear it to, I also rushed the grieving process in the beginning. Working a lot, hanging out a lot, dating a lot and drinking a lot. Recycling the emotions from one of the above to the next, until I realized by year two that I was going to end up worse off than I was on July 25, 2013 (the day my mother passed), if I didn’t slow down.
So when I was sewing this dress, on and off, during yesterday’s rainy day here in New York city, I wasn’t focused on the time. Instead I was focused on the process. Adding a top stitch here and a trim on the inside here and there. No one will ever see these little details up close. But I know I put the work in, and this is the part that makes you proud. Same in this healing process. Now that I have a grip on grief I can smile thinking of this truth – I’ve put in the work, and this work has turned my tears into triumphs.
Embrace How Being Motherless Has Made You Fearless
“I don’t take this life for granted.” This simple phrase was a go-to affirmation in my life prior to losing my mom, yes. But when you really see what is left after life is gone, you can’t help but live differently.
And my different is that I am more fearless than most can even comprehend, including myself sometimes.
This boldness I have taken on in life was alarming at first, because I always considered myself to be a risk taker. But now it is super amplified. Yes I still feel fear. I mean I am not a super human guys. But nothing really scares me to the point of complacency anymore.
It’s wild over here. And super liberating to truly live life as if each day may be your last.
Turn Your Memories Into Motivators
While many people are out celebrating and honoring their mothers in the flesh today, there are many of us out there who can only celebrate and honor them through the memories.
Challenging and ever changing, this new way of “celebration” has been interesting these past three years. One year I got a tattoo in honor of my mother. Barely thought it out. But love it so much today, so thank goodness that worked out. One year I went to be with her entire family, although I wanted to be alone. That taught me the lesson of selflessness in the midst of grief. She was more than my mom, and I would forget that a lot the first year. And this year, I played it by ear and did whatever my spirit lead me to do. Makes sense since (scroll up) being in the moment is my main motivator in this motherless life.
Overall the journey has been up, down and all around. But I count it all joy, because as the young kids say, “life is lit right now!”
I will celebrate this. I will celebrate the answered prayer of joy after sorrow. I will celebrate that while I may be motherless, I am definitely fearless!
P.S. If you have been following along since I started this blog – yes, I’ve made this dress before (creature of habit). But I made a few changes and added a lot of small details. So it looks the same, but it is definitely not.
Kind of like me. 😉