Today marks six years since my mother unexpectedly passed away. I’ve written a number of posts about grief and grieving, and I still find all of it true, even six years from that day. I still miss her just as much. Her absence still hurts just as acutely. I still think about her every day. And I still wish with all my heart that she was still with me today. With that being said, one thing that has changed is that I have been learning to live without her.
There are still times when I reach for my phone to call her before remembering that that is no longer possible, and there are still times when I visit home and I expect her to just be in the other room. But, these times are becoming fewer and further between. I am learning, and I have been learning, to live my life differently without her.
I love my mother, with all my heart, forever. And I look forward to the day when we can be reunited again—the greatest blessing of the saving ordinances of the gospel. But for now, I want to carry on her legacy and ensure that my family and my children will know at least a piece of my mother. So with this post, I want to focus on one way I have been doing this very thing and that is in regards to celebrating holidays.
Aside from my mother’s great love for the gospel and for others, one of the things that I remember most about her was her love for the holidays. I’m not just talking about Christmas, but every holiday—even the more “minor” ones. Each holiday was an event in our household, from Halloween to Valentine’s Day to Independence Day all the way to Saint Patrick’s Day. My mother would hang decorations for each holiday at least a month in advance and do her best to play said holiday’s music and movie selections to get us—her kids—excited for the celebration awaiting us.
|Family picture by the Christmas tree.|
I know that some people don’t like celebrating holidays, or even hearing about how others celebrate the “minor” holidays. But I don’t make a big deal about these days for anyone other than my family (and for the people I really love). This is how I am honoring my mother’s memory and this is how her memory will live on in the minds and hearts of my children who never really got the chance to know their amazing Grandma Taylor. These are the days I feel closest to my Mom, and I will continue to cherish the memories I have of her as I create new memories in her honor with each upcoming holiday.