Day 2451: In memory of my mother

Today is the 11th anniversary of my late mother’s passing, according to the lunar Hebrew calendar AND the solar Gregorian calendar. To honor her memory, I lit a Yahrzeit candle:

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This is the obituary of my mother that’s still online:

Louise (Sulkin) Koplow

Entered into rest August 12 at the age of 90 years, of Peabody, formerly of Lynn & Swampscott. Beloved wife of the late Aaron Koplow. Devoted mother of Ellen Koplow of Medford & Ann Koplow of Brighton. Cherished grandmother of Aaron David Fairbanks of Brighton. Loving sister of the late Emma Gordon, Elizabeth Rich, Esther Sulkin, Beatrice Plane, Ernest & Louis Sulkin. Dear aunt of many nieces, nephews, grand nieces, grand nephews & their families. She also leaves a large group of friends that she has known for decades. Services at Stanetsky-Hymanson Memorial Chapel, 10 Vinnin Street, SALEM/SWAMPSCOTT line on Thursday, Aug. 14 at 1:00 p.m. Interment at Cong. Ahabat Shalom Memorial Park, Danvers. Memorial week through Tuesday, August 19, daily from 2-5pm and 7-9pm at Woodbridge Assisted Living, 240 Lynnfield St, Peabody. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made in her memory to the American Heart Assoc., 20 Speen St., Framingham, MA 01701.

I miss my mother, who had a huge influence on me, every day.  As the years go by, I have more “conversations” with her in my head. I can still hear her voice, saying my name, with a mixture of love, concern, worry, and anticipation.  Here are other things I can hear her say, in her special voice:

Everything worth doing is worth doing well.

There’s a place for everything and everything in its place.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

I can also hear her infectious laugh and see her dancing and clapping at holidays and celebrations.  She loved my father’s sense of humor  but she would kick him under the table when she thought he had gone too far with a teasing joke.  She was thoughtful, kind, and welcoming to all.  She didn’t like surprises, but she appreciated the wedding anniversary surprise party my sister organized for our parents. My mother loved living near the ocean and she spent a lot of time in the sun on the beach.

My mother was very clean and neat and she did not want a pet in our house.  However, after my first heart surgery at age 10, she let me get my heart’s desire — a kitty.  She loved that cat, too, and after Tuffy died at age 13, my mother told me she saw a bird in the yard  she thought was Tuffy reincarnated.  Although reincarnation didn’t really fit in with the Orthodox Jewish beliefs my mother adopted after she married my father, I think that reflected how she chose to grieve — to believe that a beloved spirit still existed.  Like my mother did with Tuffy,  I see my mother in other beings, everywhere.

Yesterday, consciously or unconsciously, I took many photos to fit today’s post.

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Here’s a favorite photo of my mother:

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Here‘s a song that my father sang to my mother on another anniversary celebration:

Thanks to my mother, to all who loved her, and to you — of course! — for reading this post, today.

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Categories: in memoriam, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

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32 thoughts on “Day 2451: In memory of my mother

  1. Here’s to your mother and the beautiful legacy she left you. She would be so proud of the kind and brilliant woman you’ve grown into.

  2. Nice trip down memory lane, dear Ann 🙂
    About people and animals, I think, that before a human have tried to love an animal, their soul are not fully developed. Just my thoughts.
    Enjoy your vacation.

  3. A fine tribute

  4. “There’s a place for everything and everything in its place.” What does this mean?

  5. While it wasn’t one of her sayings you shared here I can imagine your mother saying, “Better to light a candle than curse the darkness.” She sounds like a wonderful person and I’m glad you hold a perpetual light of her memory. Whether reincarnated or not as long as we remember those we love they never really leave us.

  6. The story about your mother giving you a kitten when you were gravely ill has been fresh in my mind since you first told it here in this blog. Your love, appreciation and admiration for both of your parents is always visible here at The Years of Living N-J. Thank you for that gift, so different from so much of what we read these days. I am remembering your wonderful mother today too. Thank you.

  7. puella33

    Sincere condolences, Warm hugs to you

  8. Love and hugs to you Ann.
    My Mum wrote “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” in my autograph book.
    Dad added “It all depends on you.”

  9. I can’t imagine life without my mum, it is hard enough without my dad

  10. Your mother is beautiful. You look just like her. ❤

  11. A lovely post. Your mom sounds like a jewel….

  12. Your post and tribute touched me very deeply, Ann. I love your mother’s spirit of openness to new thought and flexibility in how she saw life around her. I can see that your carry her very close to your heart, and missing her terribly, you still connect. Thank you for sharing that beautiful obituary. It gives us a little sense of being a part of your family.

  13. Beautiful tribute, my dear friend. You are truly blessed to have such a wonderful mother. Love the photo of your good looking parents. In fact they both looked alike and for the Chinese that is a sign they were meant to be together and what we call true love. (Ɔ ˘⌣˘)♥(˘⌣˘ C)

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