One of my last and favorite memories of my 94-year old mother was lying beside her on her hospice bed as we both cried, my tears more audible than hers. I was patting her shoulder, and felt both sadness & relief when she responded by patting my back.
So strange, that after so many years of resentment, that here I was missing her and feeling a void before she had even left. Wondering how many nights I would automatically think, I have to call mom, I have to visit mom, before I would realize that I can't call or visit anymore.
I mentally replay what I said at her graveside..."no matter what happened in the past, I will always love you". Then I remember what the rabbi said when feeling resentment toward others, "there's a little piece of me in you and a little piece of you in me. I translated that into the 'ugly' that I dislike in you is the same 'ugly' that I dislike in myself."
I'm forever grateful that her life was full & long, long enough for me to make amends to her, and to experience the freedom to accept her love and to express mine. If the perfect mother is the mother who loves unconditionally, then I had the perfect mother!
I'm a recovering & retired 63 yo woman, daughter, wife, mom of (3) amazing adult children & "Shesha" to (3) precious grandchildren :)