On this day, December 11th, one year ago I was spending a very emotional last day in Mexico City. On this day two years ago, I was spending a very emotional last day with my mother. Each of these days has had a profound effect on my life.
Seeing the poverty of the people who live in the dumps of Mexico City, moved me in a way I never expected it to. These people were happy. They did not seem desperate, they did not seem to feel sorry for themselves. Their joy, became my joy. And yet their way of life broke my heart. I was so proud of my daughter for her hard work while serving the poor and I thought of my mom many times during that trip. In fact, I took that trip as a way to honor my mom's memory. I did not want to mark the one year anniversary of her death with tears of sorrow, although I did cry. I cried for the sweet people who flocked to our bus for Christmas presents and groceries that day. I cried because I was moved with compassion.
I can not explain how December 11th, 2008 effected my life. I could go on and on about the agony of the 8 days prior to my mom's passing. I wept for her during those days, like I have never wept before. I wept for her suffering and I wept because I knew she wanted so desperately to live. But it was not to be. My heart was broken in a way that defies words. I have said many goodbyes in the last 11 years, but nothing prepared me for this.
Life has moved forward in the last two years. Things have changed and things will continue to change. For this is what life is about. We have days that change us. There are moments and events that mark us. I have no doubt that I will be ok, even though my mom is gone, just as I have no doubt that my trip to Mexico City will forever hold a special place in my heart. But every year on December 11th, for the rest of my life, I will remember the loss of my mother.....and then I will remember the dumps of Mexico and the healing I found there.