Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Mom: Lucille M. Py (1936-1998)

I think when I am old and in a state of dementia with all my memories lost or buried, I will still suffer the memory of this week, indeed the whole month 12 years ago when my mother lingered in a death coma and finally died on April 29th. She was only 63 and though cancer had eclipsed most of her body, her life-long passion for life fought the inevitable, and so she held out as long as she could.

My mom was one determined gal and she made the rules. Or, defied them. "Some rules are just meant to be broken," she'd often say with a smile playing at the corners of her eyes.

And she loved. She loved Claire most of all. When Claire came along, she transformed herself from mother to grandmother with ease. To love unconditionally without having to parent, or punish, or bear any financial worry or burden, was her ultimate goal in life. She could at long last turn all her focus and energy into what she most wanted in life.

My garden was started the day she died. It was a beautiful day just like today. She was a gardener and so the greenery blowing in the gentle breeze outside her window was bittersweet. She died before dawn. The dog howled. The children and Moms waited for the school bus. Everything went on as normal. But it wasn't. I didn't go to work. I hadn't really worked much throughout the month. My boss, a compassionate fellow, just knew what I needed to do. So my brother and I  went to a flower nursery. And we wandered around and giggled over stupid things. And I bought plants. A canna. I couldn't remember the name. So I told the nurseryman that I wanted that plant "with attitude." Like Mom. The nurseryman knew just which plant I wanted. And Chip made me laugh so hard. And I can't remember what we were laughing at, but I do remember that it was a beautiful day.  The Putterer


  1. What a nice tribute to your Mom's memory. I'm sure she'd appreciate it. From your old neighbor, Terry

  2. I think about your Mom often. I always remember being out on your folks deck in Kill Devil Hills early one morning with your Mom. She told me that we had a special friendship and not to let it go. We need to get together again soon. For us and your Mom.

  3. Thanks. I know your mom was amazing--it's so clear in all of her children.