Being moved, moving forward, physically moving my body, moving in, moving out, and moving on. The theme for my week, upon reflection, is move.
My mom’s service was beautiful. It was well attended. Despite everything going on in our personal life, my boyfriend also came with his mom. A woman going through her own battle with cancer. A colleague from work came to pay her respects. I was so very moved by her presence, everyone’s presence. Aidan and William were so nice with her and her husband. He held William; as if they had known them from the beginning. All of my sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews were there. My aunts and uncles too. Friends, loved ones. Aidan was intrigued by all the flowers, they were gorgeous, and he wanted to know all of their names. It was so cute. I was able to stand and speak for my mother, without breaking down crying. I think she would be proud. Aidan had Kleenex and was wiping away his mom’s tears. He even held his little hand out to shake the lady’s hand at the end of the service. Impressive.
My father had come down from Vancouver and we had a wonderful breakfast/brunch at a sugar shack the next morning. The family gathering, that afternoon was also beautiful. All of my sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, and partners were there. My grandsons were so calm and Aidan was very sociable. He talked with everyone. People of all ages were playing together. My second dad watched and I told him how beautiful it was. People were impressed with the little ones. A weekend spent with family. But more finality.
Monday was back to work. A busy day to be sure. A new audit started and I still had other projects to plan and/or manage. The week was looking to be busy and I had travel arrangements to make. I was leaving for the Saguenay region that Monday night for three days. Just move, keep moving. All I could think was just handle one thing at a time, as it comes and do the best I can. It appears to have worked for this week, at any rate. The audit progressed well. My other projects are on track. I keep thinking to myself “How will I get this all done, on time, with quality delivery, and client satisfaction?” I do not know how I will do so. All I know is that if I keep doing what I did this week, I should be able to pull it off. Just keep on focusing, doing, moving, applying, and trying. The travel was also pretty easy and uneventful. The flights were on time, the car rental was smooth, no line ups. The people at the site were also welcoming, helpful and nice in general. No conflicts. My team is amazing. I find myself very appreciative of that this week.
Physically moving my body
I have been working with Claudia, my friend and personal trainer since April 3. I had a session with her Monday afternoon before leaving town for work. It was amazing, as usual. However, I needed a plan for the rest of the week until Friday. She gave me a plan to follow. I had made sure the hotel had a gym and that I would be able to continue on my plan, even while out of town. It turns out the gym was under renovation. I was disappointed and texted her that I would not be able to do what we had planned. Plan B was take the stairs and walk around a lot. So I made a decision to make my own routine. Every morning I woke up and walked around outside for about 5 minutes to “warm up”. Then I went up and down the 4 flights of stairs and did the plank for 1 minutes. I repeated this three times. The whole thing took about 30 minutes and I felt better about not having a gym. Keep moving, just keep moving. That I all I could think to myself.
I arrived back in town on Thursday night. I was relieved and cried a tiny bit that day. I did not feel like dealing, speaking or managing anything when I got home. I did not even cook. I ordered a pizza, my cheat for the week and watched T.V. I ignored my phone. I ignored everything. It was the beginning of my 4 day Easter weekend. Friday morning I woke up and relaxed. I had a session with Claudia that afternoon. I love having the day off to go work out at whatever time I choose. An unexpected gift, we were alone in the gym for the full hour. I gave it everything I had. Just move, just keep trying. It is the best therapy for me right now. As I sit writing this, I am still feeling sore in muscles two days later. I am so looking forward to Monday.
After the session with Claudia, I went shopping. It turns out my shoes are finished and not good enough anymore for my work outs. She has told me this multiple times and I finally took the time to get new running shoes. Nike Freedom. I like the name. They also fit and are comfortable, which is nice. I found a water bottle so that I can stop buying plastic water bottles. It is about time I suppose. I love oceans, lakes and water in general, and I have been guilty of not helping the environment by my consumption of water bottles. Well that stops now. I have done something positive with this bottle. It also helps that it is has flowers on it. I can also put fruit in my water because it has a mechanism for doing that. Flowers remind me of my mom. I looked for workout clothes but I did not find any I really liked for a reasonable price so I let that go. I went to the market after my work out, with my boyfriend, to buy fish. I have been advised to eat protein and my nuts and seeds are not going to cut it. Given I do not eat chicken, red meat, pork and I do not like eggs, I bought salmon. The market also has flowers. The last time I was there, I thought I would browse the flowers, but I started to cry, so I cut that short. This time, my plan was to find an African violet, my mom’s favorite house plant, and bring one home. I found a beautiful little African violet. She cost $3.00. I brought her home. I named her Tessie, after my mom. She sits with seashells and four leaf clovers and gets the sunlight she needs. I talk to her daily. She maybe small, but she means everything to me. I hope I get my mom’s green thumb. She could grow any plant and had multiple African violets when I was younger. She was known for her talents with flowers and how much she loved them. Tessie has moved in and I hope she stays with me for many years to come.
I sat on my balcony that afternoon, in the glorious sun as my boyfriend cooked the salmon. It was delicious and I am certain mom was with me. I cried but I am not sure if it was sadness or the relief of knowing that even if I move on I am not forgetting her.
Saturday morning was the day we were to move my mom’s personal effects and furniture out of the home she had been staying in. My brother, sister, and nieces with their partners were there to help with the move. Saturday is the day I usually write. I had made that promise to myself on New Year’s Eve. It has also been very good for me to do this. But yesterday, I did not wake up early enough to write. Instead, I went to help with the move. I was in charge of packing her clothes. I had been worried about what would be done with her things, and these concerns were put to rest by, one, my own realization not to worry, probably my mom talking to me and two, by my brother and sister who affirmed my belief that sorting and giving away her personal effects will come later. I had not expected to feel an overwhelming wave of sadness as I opened the closet and touched her clothes. I thought I was doing well under the circumstances. Just one touch of her robe and I felt like a helpless child longing for mommy. My sister was with me and we did it together. Then we started to remember how beautiful she looked in this top or that vest. The time she wanted a dress and Martin, my brother, took her shopping for one. We started to remember all the good times. Packing became easier. Then in the corner of the closet, we found “work out” clothes. Or comfortable clothing. Whatever, take your pick? We looked at them and there was a vest, perfect for running outdoors, leggings, the shorter ones, perfect for this time of year, and tops, exactly what I had been looking for the day before. I had never seen my mother wear these. Apparently, she had taken my niece Judith, shopping at Costco and she liked them so much she bought some for Judith and herself. But this would have been at least two years ago. Before the conditions took over. My sister asked if I wanted them. This time, I said yes. The other items of clothing, I could not imagine ever wearing because I thought I would feel sad, but these items, I decided I would use to keep motivating me to move. In her memory, I will wear them and take care of my body. I went to my brother’s house afterwards. We sat outside and talked, the sun was shining on us. I had my trusty water bottle with lemon. I did not worry about writing yesterday. I did not worry about much. I just spent time with my brother. I came home and fed the birds some seeds my boyfriend had brought, talked to Tessie, made my mom’s spaghetti sauce for dinner and I slept for almost 12 hours last night.
Today is Easter in my part of the world. I am not religious, but Happy Easter nonetheless. I have made plans to go see my second dad. He has a lot of children and grandchildren to spend time with him. I am happy about that. Most of them work for him too. The only link I have with him is my mom. I am hoping I can keep my relationship with him, despite the fact that she is not physically here anymore. I enjoy my talks with him. We both share a love for red wine, responsibly and in moderation. I think he has wisdom and I always respected how he worked for his dad and continued to grow his company afterwards. I respect how he was with my mom. I also realize that I could be a painful reminder of my mom, at a time when he is trying to heal. I am happy that I will be able to go see him today. Maybe one of my brothers or sisters will be there too. I realize I have taken many things for granted in all of this. Another promise I made myself was to stop. This week, I texted my family for no other reason than to let them know I was thinking about them. I just realized I forgot about my friends and my dad. I will try and do better this week.
I have so many plans for this week. I hope it all works out. Looking back at last week, I can see that things usually do work out. For that I am thankful. Moving on does not mean forgetting my mom. I have found ways to move on and forwards while still keeping her with me. At least for today.