Friday, November 10, 2017

Every Day

 Every day is a struggle. As I approach the second year of mom’s passing, I have to find the strength to move forward. Some days I’m hopeful and other days I’m angry or sad. My mood shifts quickly and I feel out of control for a brief second. Letting go of some things is harder than I anticipated and I get attached to objects that aren’t Mom. I finally understand how and why people collect trinkets and items that we would perceive as junk. With every item that one attaches themselves to there is a memory that belongs to it. That memory lives within the trinkets and every time it is looked at or touched the journey brings you back. It’s hard to let go when there is a small piece of Mom still left here to haunt me.

Things make me cry more than they used to. I’m more sensitive and raw than I used to be. Maybe it’s because I can still feel her even though she’s no longer here. When I look into her bedroom she’s sitting on her bed watching television completely immersed in whatever it is that’s on the screen. When I drive down certain roads, I reach over and remember what it was like to have her in the passenger seat. I miss her with every fiber of my being and hurts from the core of my being.

I’m told that it will get better. In some ways it has. I shed a tear but its not for long and then I move forward with my day. Grief therapy has helped me to cope with day to day life. It’s giving me tools to deal with it but sometimes I feel more lost than ever. I look back and remember how much she missed her mother and I hope that they’re together.

In spite of it all I will continue to smile. I will let go of the things and I will live life in this moment because it’s what she would have wanted. It’s what I want. I love you Mom.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017


Many people see Las Vegas as a place of glitz and glamour. It's the city of dreams. You could walk into a casino and play the right hand or hit the right jackpot and become rich. The showgirls are beautiful and the entertainment is top notch. What happens there stays there and it's usually a lot of fun. 

For me growing up there was a whole different perspective. I went to school every day. I walked home most of the time. As a teenager I worked in the Forum Shops at Ceasar's Palace slinging candy. It was home. We did the every day stuff that everyone does only there were slot machines and fancy casinos. Mom was a teacher and my dad worked construction. My childhood really wasn't much different and I felt safe there. 

Yesterday I awoke to a tragedy that I'm still trying to wrap my head around. The headlines keep reading, "59 dead and over 500 injured." It's a scene that I watched over and over and I can hear the gunshots as if I was there. My heart breaks when I think about this tragedy and I admit that I felt comfort when I learned that all of my family and friends were safe. I know that others weren't so lucky. I know that many thought they were going to a concert. They were going to have fun and make memories and instead a memory no one hopes to have was forced upon them. 

I suppose I could pray. I'm not sure what good that would do. What's done is done and now we as a community have to clean up. In the last several months we've seen so much tragedy. We have watched countless communities ravaged by shootings, hurricanes, fires, and earthquakes. I'm not a person of huge faith so the only thing I know to do is send love and try to be a positive force in my life and in my work. I've lost complete faith in the leaders of this country but I haven't lost faith in  my fellow man. The bright shining moment through all of this tragedy is that we have once again pulled together. 

I wish I could hug my family now but they're too far. I hope against hope that we figure out how to move forward and learn from this. I wish I had words of wisdom on this blog but I don't. All I have is love and I hope...

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

To Be Humbled and Grateful...

As a stylist, you try to connect with each client. There are some that no matter how much you try, you just never get on the same page. Then there are others that you wonder if you somehow bonded in another life. One of those people for me is Hannah. She came into the salon with all her fire and awesome curly hair. I was humbled when she told how far she drove just to see me ( all the way from Brenham). It always humbles me that someone would drive down the street to see me, let alone miles and miles.

Every time I saw that she was on my books, I was always excited. We both had so much to talk about.  She is a real estate agent kicking butt and taking listings. She also listened to my sadness and my journey of grief from the loss of my mother this past year. She allowed me to be the professional I needed to be and the ear that I sometimes need even though my job is to listen. She's one of those witty and smart people that you can't help but love. When she came into the new salon space ( Sweet 101 Salon ) she was so excited for me and she loved that I had a partner in crime, Lyndsey, with me. I'm telling you, I love this chic. She truly is one of those people that smiles and you smile with her because you have to. It radiates from her soul.

Not long after the last appointment I had with her, she posted on Facebook that she was diagnosed with breast cancer. My heart broke. I have known people in my life who battled cancer and won but this one hit home for me. Maybe it's because we're not that far apart in age but mostly because she and I resonated from the beginning of our client/stylist relationship. When she learned that she would not only have to undergo a double mastectomy but also chemotherapy, she messaged me. Hannah wanted to donate her hair and she wanted me to cut it. 

I had to cry before I could even respond to her. I had not only grown to love and respect this woman, but the hairdresser in me was proud of our hair journey. But the tears came from a more visceral place. Being a hairstylist is very personal for me. Every two hours I make someone feel good. Or at least that's the end goal. Now Hannah was asking me to cut off all of her hair so that someone else could love her hair as much as she and I did. Not only was I asked to do that but she allowed Lyndsey and me to a part of their family for a day. In solidarity, her sisters Abby, Laura, and her husband Charlie, had all decided to go under the shear.

So this past Sunday afternoon, we decided to make it a party. Lyndsey and I put together a gift basket and my sweet husband, Cliff, helped us put together a small spread of snacks and sparkly drinks. We had decided that we were celebrating life. This negative thing was going to be turned into a positive thing. They were all doing the chop together. There were tears and laughter through out the day. I thought of that moment in Steel Magnolias when Truvy says, "Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion." That was exactly what we had. 

I was reminded of what it is I love about this job. There are days when I'm tired of standing and I couldn't care less about another person's want or need and then something like this knocks me back down to earth. I am blessed to be where I'm at. I'm also honored that someone thought so much of me and my friend Lyndsey, that we were invited to be a part of this amazing family for one afternoon. I'm humbled and grateful. I'm forever changed. 

"Just like moons and like suns, with the certainty of tides, just like hopes springing high, still I rise..."-Maya Angelou. 

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Since we last spoke....Happy Mother's Day

It's been quite some time since I've written. The last few months have been full of schedules, time passing, and more days of grief. I couldn't bring myself to commemorate the anniversary of Mom's passing with a blog. It just didn't seem right and then suddenly it's real. So here we are, a year and some months later and it's Mother's Day.

I wasn't sure about this Mother's Day. Through grief therapy I'm learning that I'm in the acceptance phase of grief. This basically means that it's hitting home. As I have come out of the initial fog of the first year of losing Mom, the reality is setting in. Truly setting in. The second year is the reminder that it's for real. I've heard everyone say that you have to get through all of the firsts that losing a loved one entails. For me it appears to be the seconds; the second year begins, my second birthday without her, and the second Mother's Day. It's the one where I'm sober and not inbibing in a bottle of wine to masque the sorrow.

But I didn't wallow today. Instead, I spent Mother's Day celebrating with friends at a lovely brunch. Then Cliff and I rounded out the day by attending the wedding of two people that we have come to know and love over the years. They finally made it legal today. In between events I talked and text with family in the effort of spreading love and joy. I honored Mom by doing what she taught me to do; love. I unconditionally loved today. I would like to think that somewhere Mom is watching and smiling because I did what she taught me to do.

I miss her so much it makes my whole body ache. Some days, there aren't even tears, just fatigue and an empty heart. I see friends who still have their moms and I feel a little envy. Then I hope they know how precious their time is with their mom. Still, I trudge on and I live every day for me and for her. I do what I can to carry on her legacy and the legacy of moms everywhere. She is ever present and always with me.

Happy Mother's Day Mom. Stay in the light where you belong.