Mom dancing

While her husband sat, mouth taut, fists clenched, jealousy raging, Mom danced. She and Chris whirled around the room with abandon.

I watched, camera in hand, from the middle of the massive glass doors which had just been pushed wide open upon my entrance into the grand retirement home where Mom lived. Click. Click. Click. The smile on her face said it all, and I had captured it.

Later, after pulling the photographs off my memory card, I smiled again upon remembering the sheer joy I had seen on her face.

Last March after Mom died I used one of the photos for her obituary; I wanted her friends to see her undeniable happiness; something that had eluded her for many years.

A few days ago I came across the photo unexpectedly while searching for something unrelated. Though I had seen the photo a handful of times already, this time I noticed something I hadn’t picked up on before: Mom was staring and smiling contentedly AT HER WEDDING RING.

Instantly I knew.

Instantly I was standing in her body, her powerful mind transporting us both to the ecstasy of true romantic love; she was dancing with my father, the love of her life.

I find it both fascinating and comforting that prior to me having found the love of my life, I hadn’t noticed the stunning significance of the photo. Despite forty-four years of being apart, my mother never stopped loving my father, and though she wore another man’s ring on her finger, what she saw was the ring my father had given her nearly sixty-six years prior. In that moment with Chris, the dance instructor, she was gloriously transported to a magical evening from the past.

Perhaps today Mom is smiling from Heaven at the timing of my unexpected revelation–how it coincides so nicely with the fact that I have finally found my own true love. It’s really all she ever wanted for me: to be truly happy. I am Mom, I am.

I think I’ll take some dance lessons…

Mom and Dad

17 thoughts on “Mama

  1. I so wish my mom had lived to be that age and I had such a photo. I see where you get your beauty, my friend, inside and out. Lovely tribute to your mom. Lovely tribute to your own great love.

    1. Thank you for your warm comments, Jayne–I wish my mom had been able to see her own great beauty.

      I’m so sorry that you didn’t have your mother long enough.

  2. The beauty of a photograph is the way it captures a very specific moment in time . . . And then we get to see/reflect on what it is we captured. Sometimes I simply marvel at the things that connect me to my mother in ways that seemed to reveal themselves after she was gone .

  3. What a lovely connection to make with the photo of your mom. I saw a woman the other day that for one brief moment I thought it was your mom. I’m grateful I got to know her. I miss her. She is happy that you’ve found your true love.

    1. Thank you Uvi. After my father left her, my mother never saw her great beauty. It is one of the mysteries she has left for me to figure out. We women have so much to figure out, don’t we?

  4. This is truly beautiful, both the photograph and the story behind it. This is a precious memory indeed. In so many of the photos I have of my Mom she appears sad, I would cherish one like this with her smiling. I am certain she smiles at what my life is like now, and I know that your mom is smiling for you too!

  5. Britton, I missed it, too, until you mentioned your mother was looking at her ring. I saw her dancing happily, then upon your mention, that she was reminiscing happily, too. What a precious shot. What a tremendously-filling post.

    1. Yes, and she dances happily now, beyond the heartache and pain. Her African Violets are blooming in my kitchen now as never before…

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