This is my sixth Mother’s Day without my Mom, Sheila Krotinger, and as much as I miss her terribly, I often think about all that she has missed. A lifelong, ardent Democrat and strong supporter of gender equality, she missed casting a vote for Hilliary Clinton for President four years ago, and then seeing the first black President sworn into office.
She missed using Facebook, which I think she would have enjoyed since she was one of the first of her same-age peers to get a computer, took classes, and eventually taught other seniors how to send emails (“They can never figure out the cursor” she would complain to me).
And of course, she has missed so many family milestones –the beautiful Bat Mitzvah of my niece in Sacramento, and then Danny’s Bar Mitzvah during Hanukkah, high school graduations, awards/honors, my nephew’s published books, my daughter performing in off-Broadway shows in New York City and meeting our new cat (we are very big on felines).
I was thinking about all of this when we experienced another milestone this week—Danny, age 17, walked independently for 15 steps or so, a feat he has not done for nine years when medication-induced ataxia set in, on top of his long-diagnosed cerebral palsy. Of course I immediately posted the news on Facebook, my husband videotaped it on his Iphone, and warm congratulations poured in from all over. My Facebook status update received 54 “likes” on this great news, the highest number any post of mine has ever received.
But without Mom to hear about it, the milestone wasn’t complete for me.
Some people say that after someone dies, their “spirit” lives on, but I have my doubts. For me, I would have to say that her voice lives on in my head, prodding me to action, warning me to keep my BS detector on high alert, and reminding me to put on sunscreen and wear a hat.
I love you Mom.