A Year Later: Remembering My Mom


Over recent days I have been consumed with getting tasks done associated with my job.  My mind has also been busy on other things associated with writing and activism around this year’s Presidential campaign.  However, I keep coming back to this time last year when my mom transitioned over and became a true angel.  My last communication with her was at 7:04am on April 15, 2011 when she responded to a text I sent.  For approximately a month when my grandmother moved to a nursing home I checked on my mom each morning.  This was in addition to our evening wind down talks on the phone that we had done for nearly a decade.

Mommy and Me

My mom responded by texting “have a good day & luv u 2”.   I cherished these words that she said to me in text as well as verbally, many times over my life.  Like me sometimes she could be moody and want to escape into her own space, she too was an only child.  I believe the connection of us being only children, allowed a unique understanding of each other.   We knew when to give space to the other.  I think back to weeks before I started working after 7 months of unemployment, when she would sit near where I was just to be in the same space.  Way back she and I had conversations about whether people knew when their time of death was approaching.  I believe she felt her time on earth ending soon, maybe it was due to her declining health.  Cigarettes had finally done her in through breathing complications from COPD.

I am determined not to focus on the day my mom died but to focus on the almost 66 years she lived.  And of those the almost 45 years she was present in my earthly world.  I had a friend once say that my mom exuded love; I always thought that was one of the most beautiful things, anyone ever said about her while she was alive.  In death, the same type of things were said about her, mainly that she was a humble Christian woman.  Just like everyone my mom was not perfect but to me she was pretty near to it.  You may think that I am romanticizing the relationship of mother and child but we were very much understanding of each other’s personality quirks.

I have thought hard on how I would describe my mom.  For me the word that is most descriptive of her is compassionate.  She believed in showing compassion to everyone, it didn’t matter the person or their status in the world.  In addition, she was somewhat fearless even though during her later years she was more careful and hesitant with new decisions.  One of the best things she taught me was to be curious and explore the world outside of my comfort zone.  I was born and raised in the inner city of a large metropolis; and can honestly say I have ventured as far North, South, East, and West that I possibly could among it’s many neighborhoods.  This is due to my mom’s adventurous spirit to hop on a city bus or “L” train and just go explore a new neighborhood or museum.

My Mom

Finally, I am blessed to know that my mom loved me until her last breath she showed it everyday.  “I love you” were not merely words we said to each other but we showed it in many forms.  From her small sacrifices of giving me a few dollars while I was in college to making me a special peach bread pudding and many many more things I am filled up with an infinite amount of her love.   Also while she was living, I ensured that I told her how much she meant to me.  Since love is energy and energy never dies, I know that she lives forever through her love.  I miss her terribly but the ache and tears are not as severe as a year ago though they are still present.  One thing I know for sure is I am blessed to have been born from the womb of loving and kind mother.

Angel Mom

(first published May 8, 2011)

Love lives forever;
it’s energy spreads
wide with wisp

of wings, blowing
breezes over me
like mom’s kisses,

warm happiness washes
over my being.
She is now light,

like energy love’s
power never fades.
With a glance

at her coat
chair, or Bible
I remember, hugs.

Sense of humor
lives too; playing
hide and seek

with me, giggling
as she flys by.
I live and thrive

because she gave
me independent creativitiy.
Wiping away tears,

remembering cloudy days
bring light; rainbows
cannont be formed
without the rain.

by: Joyce M. Rose-Harris © 2011
In memory of my mommy, Betty J. Rose


3 thoughts on “A Year Later: Remembering My Mom

  1. Thank you and bless you for sharing your mom with us! And you are right – love energy does not diute or dissipate.

  2. Your post and poem are beautiful and loving tributes to your mom. My mom died almost 7 years ago at age 68, and I miss her every day. But they’re watching over us, I have no doubt. Peace.

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