Six weeks ago today, we had a funeral.
Today was the day when I keenly felt the absence of my confidant and sharer of tidbits of information and answerer of questions from other generations and giver of family opinions and general exclaimer over adventures.
Today I missed my Sweet Mama.
I looked at a picture of my cousin and his new wife at the wedding of his son, and felt a sudden lurch in my heart. For there, I suddenly saw my Grandpa Yoder’s face. At least it seemed like the likeness was so strong. I started to go to get the phone. I wanted Mama to check in on her computer and look at the pictures of this happy day and tell me what she thought.
“Don’t you think Jon looks an awful lot like Grandpa Yoder in that picture?” (She would have said she didn’t know — Maybe, a little bit –.)
“Isn’t Stephen’s wife beautiful? Did Aunt Gladys tell you how they met? It’s too bad that Uncle Jesse and Aunt Gladys couldn’t go for the wedding, but were they able to watch it online?” (Then we would have discussed the current health issues and travel issues and such –.)
“I thought her dress was so pretty.” (And we would have to discuss the colors and the bridesmaid dresses and the location and — well, just all of that–.)
Do you know when Robert and Michelle’s baby is due? Has Aunt Gladys said?” (And then we would have talked about how many grandchildren Uncle Jesse and Aunt Gladys have.)
And then I would have had to detail the wedding of Laura Jones and Seth Fair if she hadn’t been able to be there. She would have wanted to know every detail, down to what was worn by the mothers and grandmothers. She would have enjoyed hearing what we had to eat, and how beautiful Laura was, and how Seth struggled for composure when she walked down the aisle. She would have wanted to know how her grandson, Josh Slaubaugh did with the ceremony and how grandson Christopher Yoder and his wife Alicia and Laura’s cousin’s husband, Lee Sverduk, did with the music. And it would have been such a happy report all around.
But she isn’t here. And in the words of my friend, Lynn Lee, “No one wants to hear my ‘stories’ anymore.”
I realize that there are people who would listen, and be at the ready for me to call them and talk — but no one listened to me like she did. No one enjoys the stories like she did. And I don’t really want to tell them to anyone else. For years, I’ve tried to grasp details of the places I go and the people I see, thinking that she would enjoy them so much. I would try to stock up so she would feel almost like she had been there. I thought I was doing all that for her.
Tonight, I know that isn’t altogether true.
I was doing it for me, too.
Tonight, I try to keep the salt water out of the pie dough and determine, in vain, not to think.
But the evening closes in, and all that I can think is, “How dark it is without her.”