|Mom loved Christmas|
Hi Mom, I scripted my talk for your service. Lori spoke first and did a great job. I will share more about that later. She was a difficult act to follow.
Though I scripted everything, I improvised my first remarks, and then I forgot one part, which I will add here.
I started something like this:
"My mother loved the CBS television program Everybody Loves Raymond. In one episode, Raymond's mother Marie discovers that Raymond had already written a eulogy for his father, Frank, but not one for her, and so Marie asks Raymond to write hers. If you know the show, this becomes a funny example of Marie's manipulative ways. I never imagined this day. I never thought about a service taking place let alone planning what I would say, and so I have only spent two weeks writing these remarks, and this is what I have. Here goes."
I was going to add: "I am very blessed and honored to be able to speak at my Mother's memorial service." But I forgot to say that, despite the word "blessed" written at the top of the first page. So, I said it to everyone who complimented me on my remarks after and I write it here. It's a privilege to be able to write something in tribute to you, Mom, and I will share all my remarks a chunk at a time for the next couple of weeks, interspersed with other items so as not to overwhelm you.
Mom, I felt you there in that church just as I feel you with me all the time. I don't have to ask you how you feel about my talk because I know.
In writing this post, I think about how it was my suggestion that got you and Dad watching Everybody Loves Raymond, and how we watched the TV show so many times in the last fifteen years. There were times that we managed to get close to three hours of "Raymond" in an evening as we ate dinner and spent family time together. Their jokes became our jokes, such as Robert's "is this about me?" or "Ray is here! Ha, ha!!" And I got to watch you laugh and laugh, knowing that some day I would not be sitting with you any more and would not be seeing you laugh any more. But I think I still hear it, your laughter, and I will surely hear it next time I watch a rerun of Everybody Loves Raymond.
Here's the rest of what I consider to be the introduction to the "talk" (which others call a eulogy):
"Thank you for attending this Memorial Service. I made clear to friends of mine, many of whom had not met my mother, that by informing them of this service, I was not obligating or even expecting them to attend, and I meant that. And yet, I am happy to see so many people turning out in support of my mother and my family. I have no words for how much it means to me see all of you here. Thank you.
I would like to tell you about my mother, Mrs. Marjorie Ellen Tower, born Marjorie Delbridge in a little country town called New Lothrop. I will try to keep my comments short, but those who know me, and know I am a writer, also know that I could write a book on this subject, so short is a relative term.
When I started thinking about what I would say today, I worried that I would make this talk too much about me and not enough about my mother. And yet, all I have of my mother are my experiences with her, and so anything I say cannot help but be about me as it is also about her, which is fitting. My mother was always very much more focused on her family than she was on herself. This is one of the important things to know about her.
My sister and I have a wealth of experiences with our parents as we lived with them late into our adult years. My sister moved out when she was 31, and I lived with them until I was 47. Though this is not an unusual living arrangement pretty much everywhere else in the world, it is here in America. I used to be embarrassed about it, but after the meningitis, I was able help my Dad take care of my mother for many years, and we all grew much closer because of it. I would not trade those years for anything even though I wish the meningitis had never happened to her. Having her family around her is exactly what my mother wanted, and we were all there together with her in her final week."
|after tooth removal... :-)|
Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.
Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.
- Days ago = 10 days ago