Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #458 - 80th - Happy Birthday Mom

Mom's birthday - Clara's on the River - Battle Creek - October 1996
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #458 - 80th - Happy Birthday Mom

Hi Mom, Happy Birthday!!!

Today you would have turned 80 years old.

I am having a difficult time writing this post today, Mom.

I have started it many times and struggled with what I want to say. I want to be profound.

Mom's birthday 1998
But I have been profound already. I have no new profound thoughts. In fact, things are a bit of a jumble.

So, I am going to do two things. First, I am going to reveal my surprise, my gift to you, Mom, my tribute, and then I am going to do reprints. I am going to reprint what I wrote last year and then give links to the very first post and a later, better explanatory post, which was also written about a year ago. I also scanned some new pictures, but I am going to share ones I have shared before also. After all, not everyone looks at my blog every day. It's hit and miss. If this is a hit for you, Hi. Thanks for checking me out. Mom, you say Hi, too.

I have learned in my 458 days of doing this blog that I cannot generate original content every day. I have learned that I not only rely on re-posting other people's content but that I enjoy re-posting other people's content. Sometimes, like yesterday, I comment on the re-posts. Other times, I do not.

Today is hitting me harder than I thought. I am having trouble concentrating, focusing. So, the grief that works in mysterious ways,

And so... In the very first HEY MOM post -- this is a link -- Hey Mom #1, I wrote the following:

I was thinking of good tributes to you, Mom. For instance, you liked shopping in the mall. In fact, for Mother's Day this year (that's 2015), I had given you a gift certificate to be redeemed to get me to take you to the mall and through as many stores as you wanted (all of them if you wanted). I put off letting you redeem it until after Liesel (my wife) and I returned from our trip to Scotland. But we had been home about a month when you died, and I had not yet managed to fulfill the promise made by the gift certificate. I have a little regret, but not paralyzing regret. I had taken you on a lot of shopping trips in the last fifteen years, so it was not going to be the first one, just the first one in a while.

And so, now, 458 posts later that's just what I am going to do. You will be with me, Mom, as I go to the mall and walk around as a gift for your 80th birthday. I am so sorry that I did not give you your gift of the mall trip before you died. But I think it was as much due to your decline as my busy life.

I am going to take photos and create a post documenting my trip to the mall.

Link to 90 days explanation, which I may reprint with the mall trip photos:

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #88 - 90 days and 88 blog entries

Link to last year's Happy Birthday - Hey Mom #92.

Here's last year's entry:

Marjorie Tower's birthday October 7, 1999
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #93 - Happy 79th Birthday, Mom

Happy Birthday, Mom. Thought that would be a better start than the usual "Hi, Mom."

The picture up top was taken a few months before you came down with the Meningitis. It shows you blowing out candles for the last birthday before the Meningitis changed the way you lived the rest of your life. I have a feeling that before the meningitis you would not have wanted me to share this picture with the world, but then, after the meningitis, you wouldn't have cared. You would have laughed at this picture after the meningitis, once you were back to her best self and laughing. You had such a great sense of humor, but an even more easy going sense in your Post-Meningitis days.

The very first picture I shared in this series of "Hey, Mom" posts was of you, Mom, seated before a birthday cake. This photo had sat out, unprotected, on my desk, for over a year, always in sight, when I could think about the happy times we all shared and how your life was very different after the meningitis. By no means did you have an awful life or too much misery after the meningitis, but life was harder, there were many close call hospital visits, and there were just certain things you couldn't do, even before the palsy began to work its degenerative perfidy. I know you would agree.

But that's a depressing subject, so instead CAT UMBRELLA!!

That's much more fun.

Looking at this picture, your expression looks a bit "what the Hell?" But actually, aren't you identifying the different kinds of cats in the umbrella design?

You loved cats.

You don't need me to tell you that, but other readers may need reminding.

Birthdays were a big deal at our house. You loved holidays, Mom, especially birthdays. When I was writing the T-shirt blog, I dedicated an entire blog (a BIG ONE) to what made our birthdays so special. I have provided the link below. It's also about SPACE GHOST.

This is a link: T-shirt #303 Space Ghost

I thought about you all day today (October 7th, a Wednesday), your birthday, which I spent mostly alone as Liesel is away on a trip. It was a day full of activity and busy work but also bittersweet sadness, which is less a raw and open sore and more a deep ache in the heart.

At one quiet moment, I heard you, Mom, speaking to me, quite clearly (though in my head): "it's all right, Christopher. I am fine. I am happy and well. You will be all right, too. It's all going to be okay."

I felt re-assured and loved.

I may not have always been the best son. I may not have always helped make your birthdays as special and wonderful as you made mine in the years up to and including 1999. But in 2000 and after, shaken up by your near death experience and long recovery from surgery and meningitis and dealing with your partial paralysis, I tried to make each moment like your birthday. And then we had fifteen more of them before you had to leave us. I know you thought they were just as special as I did, as our family did.

I love you, Mom. I will think of you every day, but especially on your birthday.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 95 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1510.07 - 21:07
and again - 1510.09 - 6:47

PS: This lateness is tradition, too. I started to assemble this post on Wednesday, your birthday, Mom. But then with work and school and home work and the dog and all that, I was unable to finish it (a state I consider finished) until Friday. This delayed celebrating was something we did a lot, especially with your birthday. There was the actual day and then the celebration on a different day, one that best fit all of our schedules. Why should that change now? :-)

this photo is a bit of a cheat
it's a mother's day photo (1996)
but it's a great photo, so I used it anyway!


Mom's birthday 1999

Oct-Nov Rykse's 1998

Mom's birthday 1970

Mom birthday 2002

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 460 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1610.07 - 9:34

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