I am not sure if I am able to do this, but I’m going to try, after all, Mom always said you don’t know unless you try.
This little light of mine, the strength that allows me to stand here now, that allows me to write and express this, is a gift Mom passed on to me, and I’m going to let it shine, to guide her safely and happily on her way home. This light of hers has been passed on to many, on to all of her children, we all have a little bit of her light, in all our unique ways and I know we’re going to make sure that light is wrapped in love and given to our children, and the children of our children. That’s going to be a lot of children.
While we are all saddened by Mom’s passing, the great thing is that today we can celebrate her life, which was really very interesting. She shined brightly through the end of it all being constantly selfless and always still wanting the best for her children, grandchildren and her large, loving family. She truly had a light within that shone even in the face of imminent death. Our final conversation was one not so much about her, she just had to turn it around and make it about me, making sure that I lived the best life she saw for me. Selfless and caring, motherly, and a fighter to the end.
I read a journal entry that Mom said her life was boring at some point, and she was ok with that. I believe she thought that only because she had a big imagination, a big powerful mind, that was capable of reaching for much more, and reach she did. While she may have been bored at points, she was most certainly not boring. When I told mom I was bored, she had quite the list for me to do. Read a book, stand on my head, draw, clean your room. Mom did something about her own boredom too. She was highly opinionated, multi-faceted, multi-talented, a defender of the true and righteous, a headstrong warrior against injustice, all backed by her love of Jesus and unconditional love of everyone. She was a forgiver and an angel. She loved St. Michael the archangel, and I feel she and him have a lot in common. Mom was disgusted often, which she said regularly, not only during her last few months of being tired and having difficulty getting around, but really throughout all the time I knew her.
She was disgusted by her perception of injustices and immorality of the world. We may or may not agree with what she stood for, I think we can all agree she fought for what she saw was good and holy and fought against all she saw as evil and immoral. A few of Mom’s folders in her email show some of her concerned subjects. Religion, terrorists, politics, horses, down syndrome. I find it so funny that a 74 year old Grandmother would have a folder for her emails that just was in regard to terrorist activity. Yes, she was unique and watchful, passionate about so many things as well.. Mom wanted a better life for all of us, not just her children, and that is what she fought for, for morality, for Jesus, for the betterment of mankind. She made her dent against her enemies and made me a proud son, for one. Even though I didn’t always agree with her, I could openly discuss things with her. I loved our conversations on politics and the world, nature, life, and everything.
She was a proud member of Eagle Forum, Birthright, the Hammond town council, and quite a bit of other organizations and causes. She really took a lot. She was after all, disgusted, fed up. It was all sickening. I understand this in her, she had such great empathy she could feel the pain she perceived in the world. Her medicine for that pain was her own beautiful mind and her drive to fix them.
How she affected us all, in her own little way, or in sometimes her big way, was not through her voice, which was somewhat quiet and some might say, even little, but through her actions and intent and meaning of words, her justice and fairness, unconditional love and the eyes to see what was right in the face of all that was wrong. The way she extinguished all her pain and anguish that she has endured, to come out a fighter.
Not only that, Mom nurtured my intelligence, my sense of awe and wonder, my curiosity, my love of storms, science, everything and anything.
She was a great writer, with beautiful elegant cursive, which was a reflection of who she was. Studious, self taught, she used to read every night. She read a lot, about politics and faith, her causes, stories of courage and honor. She subscribed to Readers Digest, read Ann Coulter and called in to political talk radio shows quite a bit, so much that she had some contacts of radio show hosts in her rolodex. She wrote so many letters to the editor, she ended up getting her own column a couple times in the Hammond Times, which you can see in her scrap book she left behind.
Mom was organized, she had so many things saved sometimes I think it might be because she knew she was forgetting things a lot. When you are interested in so many things it’s easy to forget, but she was smart enough to take precautions to remember. I love this in her, who she was, because she was a good person with good intentions, very capable and easy to underestimate, because she was humble, smart, and cautious, but not too cautious. She was somewhat introverted and I know I got that from her as well. I understand her to be always thinking and making sure things were “good”, as in moral.
Mom was a great artist and that never died in her. She was great at drawing faces, people, and horses, something that many find to be the most difficult, including me. I saw some of her drawings from this past year, and they looked like they did from over 30 years ago. I imagine her drawing, all alone one night, at her old age… If only I could’ve been outside looking in, watching her draw, seeing a sweet little smile come across her face when she knew she still had it, because knowing mom, she did just that.
Not only did she do all this, she raised or helped raise 6 children and treated the Markowski children as her own as well, caring for Janice in all the time she could, her loving unselfish way is something to challenge us all. Mom passed down to us so many good things, just in actions alone. And those things came back around, especially in her last few years. Her life was redeemed and made pleasant, exciting and comfortable by my lovely sisters, who took great effort to care for her in her dire time of need.
Every time I look up in the sky and see the stars, I think of Mom. She always looked at the stars, those stars up there are very special for her and me. And it’s something so little, to say, “look at the stars, they’re beautiful tonight”… but it became something so much more, forever more. The light of those stars for me represent her awe and wonder, her beautiful curiosity. I always have her in my mind when I look up at the starry night sky. That light of hers, penetrating through so those injustices almost as numerous as the stars themselves, was tested in fire for long enough, give her her wings, she earned them.