In Memory of A Loving Mother


How do you write when your heart is heavy filled with emotions? How do you smile when there’s nothing to smile about? How do you cry when you have to be strong? How do you cope when you’re the one who had to be the bearer of bad news?

They say the best form of writing is when the pain is real. The pain is real. The smiles are faded into mourning. The hope is in the beautifully written cards I find as I unpack all that my mom left behind to give to certain people. A lot of people are in mourning. My mom was loved. I don’t want my pain to overshadow theirs. I had to tell the same story over and over. It’s like for a little bit you become mellow. You feel numb.

I keep listening to music trying to play my moms favourite songs. I turn it all off because it’s depression and I just start balling. Each song reminds me that one day we all will meet with death. What kind of legacy will we leave behind? What will the testimony be of our lives? Will the future generations carry on what we started or will they not want to follow in our footsteps because of our character?

I keep venting trying to show everybody the type of woman my mother was. The more I do – the more the stories continue to unfold for the legacy my mother left behind to everybody who knew her. She was a loved woman. She gave her life to GOD. She gave her life to her family. She gave her life to the less fortunate. She often volunteered at my school when we were children. She often volunteered in soup kitchens making soup for homeless people. She never saw status. She saw human being. She never saw what anybody looked like on the outside. She loved everybody for who they were on the inside.

I thought being my mother’s daughter. I was the only one she humbled. The more I open up. The more I realize the example she lead her life by humbled everyone. The word of her death has gotten so far that even strangers are honouring her life. Everybody is taking the time to talk to me even with their busy lives and let me know everything my mother might never have told me because she told them to tell me.

It was the mark she left on people that I want to leave this world with when it’s my time. In the end it doesn’t matter what we leave behind. What matters is the way the people we love see us. The people she loved see her as the kindest person they ever met. My mom never felt like greatness but in her death I’ve become well aware of the greatness everybody saw her as.

She wasn’t up there in any kind of spotlight. She just knew what it was to have nothing. She grew up and loved the person beside her and then the people beside them. She always started with her neighbour. She was a self -sacrificing woman.

This past month has been a roller-coaster ride of highs and lows. One minute I’m on a trip to Niagara visiting the beautiful falls. The next minute I’m finding out my moms cancer might be back but we don’t know the results yet. Eventually, my mom required a biopsy done. Two days after her biopsy I’m with paramedics saying: “Your mother passed on! There’s nothing we can do.” I tried not to cry. I tried to be strong. The next I’m letting everybody know so that nobody’s upset they have to find out the wrong way. It goes to show that you never know which way life will go. I thought my mom would be here for a few more years. I knew she was sick and battling with health issues. I had no idea that God would take her home so soon.

I watched my mother pass on. Now I’m mourning. I’m taking it one day at a time. One step at a time. I’ve been overwhelmed with letters, phone calls, and everything else. Everybody’s asking me if I need anything? How do you know what you need when the only thing you need is your mother back?

Your mother to push you forwards like she always did? Your mother to love you again with the unconditional that she had? Your mother to remind you who you are when the world can’t always see who you are? I am strong when I talk to everybody because I’m strong for them and their grief. After I put down the keyboard, after I turn off my phone. I cry myself to sleep.

Tears start falling from my eyes. Tears of memories I took for granted I wish I made more of. Tears of regret for apologies I feel I should of said even though I know I spent my moms last day cooking her a feast. Tears for my ungratefulness thinking we’d always have tomorrow to do all the things I planned for me and my mom when I got my dreams sorted out. I was selfish. I wanted so much to give up my self-sacrificing life to chase my dreams and become somebody that people were proud of. I failed. I forgot to see that my mom was always proud of me. That should of been enough for me. She was proud that in a world so many forget about their families. I continued to put mine first. She was proud that when I could of chose a husband. I chose to take care of her. I sometimes didn’t really know how much I was appreciated by her doing what I was doing which was helping her and my family when she needed somebody most. It was her friends who told me after she died just how much I meant to her and how she always told them to watch over me for me to understand.

They wanted to make sure I knew how much my mom loved me. They were willing to talk to me for hours on the phone to make sure I knew. I guess just when things go up – they go right down. I was fighting for something I wanted and getting close to it and just when I was right there in the process I lose my mother. My rock. My strength. My backbone.

My mom loved each and every last person she ever met. Rich or poor. She never looked at the outside of anybody. She always looked beneath the surface. If she saw you struggling she took the lowest seat to see you winning. She gave me a soft heart for all people. She always brought a million gifts just to put a smile on everyone’s face.

Every-time I brought a friend to meet my mom. My mom treated each and every last one like one of her own children. When I read all the letters from my friends over the years I realize how big my mom’s heart was. She befriended everybody and always understood that tomorrow was never promised. She shaped me into a bold courageous woman because I could never be her if I tried. She had faith in the darkest shadows. She had love in the darkest places.

She just loved everybody literally. Her forgiveness was never conditioned on anybody. It was always unconditional. She understood life in a way most of us could only dream and she had a way to the hearts of people. I think I get my heart from her. No I’m sure I get it from her. She never wanted to be a burden to anyone ever. If you all want to know how my mom felt about all of you. She loved to be everybody’s caretaker. It fulfilled her. I watched her even with cancer volunteer in every organization, festival, and event she could. I watched her raise up other people’s children so their parents could work and I watched her want the best for everybody always taking the last seat at every table literally.

I lost my mom but with each letter I read. I realize how many others lost a mom me and my siblings were blessed to share our mom with.

It’s never easy losing your mom, but now I have to learn to move forwards into the next chapter of life without her.


Irene Mielke

Irene H. Mielke (born May 21) is a writer (ie. content writer, blogger, poet, song writer, ghost writer, soon-to-be-author). She can write just about anything. Her first poem was published in the local Ottawa newspaper at the age of 12. She has had her article featured in a Toronto magazine a few years ago. She has also won top articles for her writing pieces twice. Irene is Canadian. Her roots are of mixed heritages. Irene’s origin consists of German and Indigenous descent. Irene struggled in her teenage years and as a result became a high school drop out. Those were some difficult times. She couch surfed, lived with roommates, and so on. She sometimes slept outside while trying to go to school. It was these experiences that humbled her early in life. She eventually graduated high-school with top grades and went on to pursue higher goals. She loves to read and support others in becoming the best version of themselves. She also loves to go the gym and her favourite sport is soccer.