Happy Mother's Day Dad This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

October 9, 2013
By , Woodville, TX
As I sit on my blanket in the freshly cut grass, I think about the picture that sits inside of a simple brown frame on my desk. Inside the frame is a picture of a woman with long red hair, blue eyes, perfect teeth, and a freckled face. However, I do not know the woman, I do not know my own mother.

Four days after my birth, my mother had a blood clot in her lungs and was rushed to the hospital. The only way to keep her alive was with machines, one to help her breathe and the other to feed her. The doctors told my father that she was in a vegetative state and would be for the rest of her life. My father knew that my mother would not want to be kept alive by machines, so he had to make the biggest decision of his life on June 22, 1995, and that was to let her go.

Since I was a little girl, every day on Mother’s Day, my sister and I would call my father to tell him how much we appreciated him taking on the role of our mother, even though my father did not live with us, he was always there when we needed him. He was there for band concerts, dance recitals, basketball games, and golf tournaments.

Another way my father was there for us was by taking us to my mother’s grave on Mother’s Day. As we make the hour and a half drive from Woodville to Vidor, my dad tells us stories about our mother. The stories would start with how perfect she looked without any trace of makeup on, and ends with a story about how their pet turkey at the time would chase her around the yard. My father would say that anyone could fall in love with my mother, even a turkey.
Looking at her headstone, I start to laugh at the picture in my head of her getting chased around our yard by a turkey, then I stop, because I realize that I can only picture how she was by the stories that I’m told. I was not as lucky as everyone else who got the chance to know my mother. They have the memories and I have a picture and a ring that will only fit on my pinky, because I inherited my father’s hands.

I reach out my left hand, which the ring is on, and dust the grass off her headstone. As I brush the dirt off, I see my mother's name become clearer. Tears start rolling down my cheeks as I think about how she missed out and, will continue missing out on my sister’s and my life.

Laying back on my blanket, thoughts start to rush through my head. She wasn’t there for my first steps, birthdays, award ceremonies, graduation, and moving me into college. I can handle her not being there for those small steps in life, but I know that I won’t be able to handle her not being there for the most important day of my life, my wedding day. I wish she could be there to help me choose my dress and plan the perfect wedding, but I know that I will never have that.

The tears finally stop and I roll over to face my mom’s grave. I start talking to her headstone as if I’m talking to her face to face. I tell her about everything that has been going on in my life. Once my stories are over, I stand up and look over my shoulder to where my father is waiting on me in the truck. I grab my blanket, fold it up, and tuck it under my arm. I bend over to kiss the top of her headstone and walk away, which is the hardest thing for me to do. I climb in the truck and glance back at her grave with tears in my eyes. My father takes my hand and tells me that my mother would be so proud of me. My father puts the truck in drive and slowly drives out of the cemetery, then I hear him whisper the words “I love you baby” to my mother. We drive away with tears in our eyes and an empty whole in our hearts.

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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

PotsnPans said...
Oct. 22, 2013 at 11:34 pm
that was a really strong piece. I'm really, really impressed. fantastic job. wow.
MorganDaniellePowell replied...
Nov. 13, 2013 at 2:30 pm
Thank you so much!
DemoD said...
Oct. 15, 2013 at 4:44 pm
That was tutching... I cried when I read the first part...
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