It’s time for a huge congratulations. Our very own Laura Maylene Walter has published this powerful essay in The Sun Magazine. As an essay writer, I can tell you that having a piece chosen by The Sun is one of those great big stars in the universe, a years-long dream realized. I’m so proud!
And — side note — as life would have it, just this week I realized that this coming Mother’s Day will be my own 12 years without my mother. Funny how that works. Here’s to you, Laura Maylene.
In the twelve years since you died, I moved eleven times and saw five therapists. I hiked in the Grand Canyon, backpacked through Europe, and drank wine in the high, open window of a Montreal hostel. I took a train alone from Toronto to Vancouver, sleeping upright in my seat for three nights. I graduated from college. I fell in love. I hung your portrait above my desk.
In those dozen years I considered but did not attend graduate school. I read hundreds of books, wrote four, and published one. I got married, bought a house, and adopted two cats. I walked through graveyards. I learned how to cook, how to garden, how to juggle. I fasted. I stopped eating dairy and then started again. I mentored troubled girls. I led disabled children around on ponies. I took up yoga and jogging and joined the y. I got my wisdom teeth out. I visited the emergency room twice. I kayaked, attended pottery classes, carved pumpkins, and screamed on roller coasters.
I broke no bones in the years since you died. I learned no new languages. I had no children.
I made it through twelve Mother’s Days without you. I made it through twelve Christmases, twelve of your birthdays and mine, my college graduation, my wedding, three career changes, and a book launch. On the day you would have turned fifty-seven, I sat in your best friend’s living room and didn’t mention you once. On your most recent birthday I forgot, for hours at a time, to miss you at all.
Now get on over to The Sun to finish reading….