Maternal Weight

My Oma passed away peacefully in her sleep a few days ago on April 1st. I noticed above all that it was a beautiful day.


I’ve already packed away the less-than-ideal moments like how the nursing home gave me a rehearsed and standard answer when I asked if she died peacfully. Or like how her room was a mess when I came to get her things 5 days later. So what, really. We are only left with blessings. She is where she wanted to be. Likely having a beer and a smoke with Opa.

I have been wondering what it means for me to have now crossed a mom-ing threshold, time easily slipping into the “you’ve been their mom longer than their bio mom”. We’ve had a very light family in the last two weeks. Hair braiding, outfit picking, laughing. Coincidence for sure. Just one of those flow periods.

But this death in my maternal lineage has done something else. It’s triggered an awareness of the cumulative weight of my job, this worldy responsibility for raising children. The Love Gel, It is now spread more thickly. There’s more jam on my toast. I hold more weight somehow. I represent.

And I wonder what this means for my own momma. My sister. In the throes of their own business, less moments for a quiet beer. But they are where they need to be too. For now, under the same roof.

Hopefully I’ve modeled a slightly less conventional view on death and dying for my girls. We often discussed details of Oma’s life and transition. This week, while I wasn’t cool with the youngest casually bringing her ham sandwich to the home for the final room clean up, I didn’t quiet the questions or giggles about my grandfathers urn or shush the dibs called on Oma’s uber fluffy bathrobe.

And life goes on.

Next up: grown up questions about their own Mother’s death. It’s coming.


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