May 5th, 2016 by Jan

I was hoping not to do this, but apparently, I still have to. It feels disrespectful not to.

On this day in 2003 I received the phone call telling me my mother’s heart stopped on the operating room table, and they could not get it going again. She died at the age of 74.

I had no idea what was in store for me. I didn’t know I could miss her so much, or exactly what life without mom would be like.

Before she died, I had a superficial idea of my mother. I knew what I knew, and only what she showed me.

Still, that was also my fault – I didn’t pay attention, I didn’t ask to know. I was polite, but, I thought, indifferent.

Knowing what I know now, and given the chance, I like to think I’d be a better daughter.

Next week, Ken and I are heading out to New Mexico. Besides hanging with my brother, eating loads of green chile, we will also visit with some people who knew and loved Alice.

We will talk story.

And, while we will talk about the same person, I will hear the adventures of someone I did not know. And I will tell a story of someone they had no idea about.

It makes me think — am I the same person for you and you and you?

Or, will folks tell totally different stories when, and if they gather after my death?

I like to think I have close to the same personality for everyone in my life. That I have no secrets. But this may also be because, I never had children to influence, and I no longer have parents to impress.

There’s a freedom to be in that.

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