Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Letter to my mother

Of all the people in my life, I think that you had the greatest influence on me. You were such a fun-loving person and one who was always interested in intellectual pursuits. I can still remember the summers collecting from the fields and ponds so that I could bring back specimens to look at under my microscope. I developed a great love of books from you and I know that my love for science came from spending my summers learning natural history of the area. Although your interests were in history which I never developed a real passion about, all that you talked to me about was assimilated and comes up in conversations today.

You were the one who always encouraged me to be the best and to work towards a career. You never discouraged me from graduate studies and I know that you were pleased that I achieved so much in my career. Your encouragement was what I needed and I looked on you as being knowledgeable on many subjects.

I never forgot all the things that you were involved in as the years went by. I believe that the depression that started around 1980 was one of the hardest things for me to understand. I didn’t know how to deal with the disease even though I tried to read as much about it as I could. I had sensed for a while some sadness in you, but I wish now that I had talked to you about it. I hope that you will forgive me for being too busy and too involved with my own life to be there when Dad got sick.

Because I belong to a great program that teaches me about myself in a spiritual way, I can see now many of the things that I did to hurt you. I was often impatient, irritable, disrespectful, and harsh to you. I cannot undo the past but I can tell you that if I could redo the past I would. The only thing that I can do is to ask your forgiveness for my not understanding you and not helping you when you needed me. I know that I did what I thought was right to keep you comfortable. It was my irritation as you aged that I am so sorry for.

I love you and miss you to this day. It is very hard when I think about watching the last years as you grew tinier. Yet, you still had that wonderful spark in your eye. I know that there were times when I diminished that spark through my actions and harsh words. I hope that you will forgive me for that.

Whenever I see an elderly person who needs assistance or who is being cared for by their child, I say a prayer and hope for the well-being of the parent and the child. I will be elderly sooner than later and will hope for loving hands to touch mine as I move towards the end of my life. I know now that it is important to have a kind word to say, a smile and a hand to hold. In my amends to you, I can say that I practice compassion towards all those who are in need of kindness. That is how I’ve changed in my life and how I will continue to change through the help of my Higher Power.

Know that I love you and miss you every day,



  1. oh jeese Syd , this post gave me goosebumps.Would you trust me if I told you your Mother has long since forgiven you? Trust the process works not just in this dimension alone will you? I hope so.Cause I just know your Mom is looking down from a sparkling star in the sky as she sees you grow.
    And I bet she know you always could.
    No matter what we left in the past with the ones we have loved,we have so much more to gain today by forgiving what we need to within ourselves and sharing what we deserve to embrace and you have so much to share:) Thank you for that!

  2. Wow. Was like listening in to a shared converstation between you and your mum in the ether. Very heartfelt. Great observations. Made me think about the way I treat my elderly dad.
    Thanks for sharing this with us syd. Great work.

  3. Hi Syd. With the exception of the first 2 paragraphs I could write that letter to my mother. Thank you for the inspiration and the food for thought. You've done your mother proud.

  4. very similar to the letter I would write to my mother..

  5. wow that was a trip reading that i just saw my mom today and I could have said all of that to her. thanks.

  6. Syd,
    I think all kids can be selfish at times and not realize how their parents feel. I'm positive your mother knows how you feel. Mothers & sons have a very close bond..I know..I have 2 sons. At times they have been selfish, frustrating, rude but I know that they love me deep down and would do anything to make me happy.
    I have told my son that even when I die I will be there for him..that he will never be alone. I'm positive our loved one's hear our thoughts and feel our love.
    It is a wonderful thing to be kind and compassionate with the elderly. Most of them just want to be acknowledged. A kind word goes a long way.
    Have a good weekend.

  7. Beautiful. I hope I get there too one day.

  8. My mother has passed too, & I so regret my actions, & some of the things I said to her. Tho I made amends to her, I'm having a hard time letting go, & forgiving myself. I know she has forgiven me, & that's all that matters to me. Yet, she would want me to forgive myself. She told me so many times, she just wanted me to be happpy, & have a good life. So, that will be my gift to her, no more beating up on myself, that's not what she would want. Same goes for you.


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