Life Goes On

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My Mom died peacefully at age ninety-seven on September 9, 2018, shortly after her birthday.  Today, August 21st, would have been her ninety-eighth birthday.   It’s hard to believe it’s been almost a year.  I still miss her so much, that some days I simply don’t function well.  At the same time, I recognize this is the cycle of life, and life must, and does, go on.  Mom would not want us to mourn every day.  She always looked at the brighter side of things and I know she would want us to do the same, remembering the happy times.

When our family gathered years ago for Mom’s 80th birthday, I decided to write a poem for her as my gift.  I wanted Mom to know how much she was loved and how important her life was to so many.  I found just about the only photos that existed of her when she was born and framed them along with the poem.

The first photo Mom is with her grandmother, then with her own proud mom holding her lovingly.

This is Mom with her father, then again with her mother.

And this is the poem I wrote for her.


Mom desired her ashes to be buried in Olin, Iowa with her second husband John, and nearby are her parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and so many more going back to the pioneer days.

Mom loved the peacefulness of Iowa and the Olin cemetery, which is in the middle of Grant Wood country.  It’s quiet, gentle, lush green with cornfields in the summer and blanketed in comforting sparkling snow in the winter when all can rest and be reborn again in Spring.  The cycle of life.  It all goes on, as it was meant to be.  That doesn’t mean we don’t wish for cold when the heat of summer is beating down, or wish for heat when it is thirty below zero.  But it all survives, year after year.

I can close my eyes now and feel Mom’s presence everywhere.  I feel Mom each time I search her  recipe box for family favorites, cook with her kitchen gadgets, put on my lipstick with her yellow 1940’s lipstick brush that I played with as a child, or wear the necklace she bought in Paris.  I see her eyes in my daughters and granddaughters.  Mom gave her wedding band from my dad to Kara, and she gave her wedding band from John to Kristina with this note:


Mom wanted love to be kept alive after her passing.


Mom loved the soothing soft breeze of trees moving.  I love knowing her grave is surrounded by them in Iowa, and that she is at peace in Heaven.  Mom is always with me. There will never be a time when the wind brushes against my cheeks that I won’t know it is her gently saying she is with me.

Mom is in the wind.




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14 Responses to Life Goes On

  1. August 21, 2019 at 4:08 am #

    I’m sorry to hear about your Mom’s passing.

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:54 pm #

      Thank you, Dawn.

  2. August 21, 2019 at 4:12 am #

    My mother had passed away last year on 1/22/2018 and it’s now been 19 months since she’s been gone. Your memories posted of your mother certainly are treasured!

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:53 pm #

      So sorry for the loss of your mom too, Dawn. Hugs to you. It’s never easy.

  3. August 21, 2019 at 9:21 am #

    I read this through teary eyes … not tears of sadness, but tears of a heart overflowing with the acknowledgement of the neverending and eternal mother/daughter love ❤️

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:55 pm #

      Beautiful, thoughtful words. Thank you, Patrice.

  4. August 21, 2019 at 9:28 am #

    Your poem is beautiful. Having the memories of your mother being such a part of my childhood is a blessing. She was my “other mother” who was always so kind to me. I know that part of Iowa having shared our adventure there. She is surely at peace in that lovely place and watching over you and your family with love. You are so like her in many ways. ❤️❤️

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:58 pm #

      Linda, we were so lucky to have our moms to share with each other growing up. I have no doubt they are watching over us.

  5. August 21, 2019 at 12:44 pm #

    <3 and a sigh

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:52 pm #

      Right back to you, Lisa. Thank you.

  6. August 21, 2019 at 12:46 pm #

    What a beautiful tribute to your mom! I’m sending you a special hug today.

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:51 pm #

      Thank you, Madonna. I’ll take that special hug.

  7. August 25, 2019 at 7:53 pm #

    Such lovely thoughts, Debbie, of who was certainly a lovely person. And your photos of beautiful Iowa – they’re so comforting. All the things you’ve shared about who your mom is, her love for you, her gifts to your daughters, the recipes….these are all gifts to your readers. It seems so generous to me that you share them so freely with us. Thank you.

    • August 25, 2019 at 8:50 pm #

      Thank you, Denise. My mom was so wonderful, I just wanted to share her with the world. As she said, “Keep the love alive.”

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