Mother’s Day – For over fifty springtimes a March day affording my siblings (Ian, Helen) and me opportunity to bestow a well-earned thank you to our much-loved mum. A warm, caring and loving parent who, along with our equally admirable father, underpinned our fledgling years; ensuring we entered adulthood equipped to bequeath similar qualities upon our children.
The above a reverential posit some may deem cliched or trite, yet I make no apologies for such gushing deference to our mother, who passed away last October. A loss which for the first time turned yesterday’s day of celebration for moms into one of melancholic reflection for myself and, I guess, my brother and sister.
Our Mother’s Days no longer episodes incorporating the gifting of flowers and/or Marks & Spencers vouchers to the matriarch. Events where mum’d provide a veritable smorgasbord of good food, laughter and tales of yore.
A raconteur par excellence, these oft whimsical yarns ensuring this ‘force of nature’ held family and loved ones captivated while homage was dutifully paid. Not that she openly sought reverence, it was automatically forthcoming as a consequence of the overt warmth, mirth and aura she exuded.
As she held court on this day of thanks to mothers around the globe, she treat her brood to humorous (sometimes bawdy) yarns and sayings. Some stories heard previously, yet delivered with such mischief and a cheeky twinkle in her eye the assembled audience cared not one jot.
As hard as yesterday was as the first Mother’s Day bereft of Mags, at evening time I gained some comfort from raising a glass of Pinot Grigio to the old lady. While doing so looking heavenwards, thanking her for the gifts of love, laughter and security she’d bestowed upon me for over half a decade.
Post-toast, after returning the glass upon the dining table her and dad bought thirty years ago, mum’s voice suddenly entered my head to mischievously inquire “Why you toasting me with that?…. It tastes like gnats pee!!”
Seriously, though, despite controlling that emotion being easier said than done, I know mum wouldn’t want any of her kids maudlin during that inaugural Mother’s Day since her passing. From my own particular perspective I’m positive she’d want me to concentrate on the wonderful three days I’d enjoyed immediately prior to Sunday.
After all, those days/nights spent mainly in the back garden my dad built were enchanting. If you add to those convivial hours a series of local ambles from Thursday afternoon and it’s fair to say this fanciful fella spent a few days in Shangri-La.
The smallish, predominantly flat backyard bearing no aesthetic similarities to the mountainous fictional paradise mentioned in James Hilton’s novel Lost Horizon. However the calm and contentment imparted over those mystical 72 hours or so were an absolute joy to experience.
The planets seemingly aligning on Thursday evening, affording me a trio of dawns/dusks blessed with beautiful spring weather, great company, good food and the creation of many fond memories. A level of catharsis I’d like to think mum had a hand in as much as the splendid human and dog company who’d been my guests over that trinity of nights.
Happy Mother’s Day for yesterday, mum!….. As I suspect your favourite shop won’t have branch in paradise, I’m sorry there’s no M&S vouchers this year. If nothing else, though, yesterday taught your eldest offspring he can still always raise a glass and smile on these occasions. Gestures made as a thank you for touching my life so wonderfully.