This is a celebration of Mums life.
It is not a morbid occasion to reflect on what we have lost.
It is a celebration of what Mum gave us and keeps on giving to us.
Yes, we will cry because Mum is not here to tell us not too.
She would like it that we are sad, Because that shows her that we loved her and loved being with her.
She would want us to laugh at her and with her because they are one and the same.
Everyone will have a story to tell about Mum, Nan, Dora or Do, she had lived a full and extraordinary life and was looking forward to starting a new stage of that life in her lovely new flat.
She wanted to go on walks over to Runcorn Hill and The Park
She wanted to sit with her new friends and gossip away the day on the bench in the garden.
Plans were afoot to go on even more trips around the country.
Seemingly, she was never in..
But, she knew that there was something wrong with her, more than the Doctors were aware of, she sensed it and occasionally, she would let her guard down and tell us how frightened she was.
She would let us in to comfort her but we could do nothing to stop it.
When she found out what it was, she vowed that she was going to fight it, she had nothing but contempt for it.
But even Mum, with her iron will, her humility, her compassion, her laughter, could not beat this and so she had to leave us.
In body she has gone but in essence she lives on and in that essence is her humor.
Mum just had to turn up and you know you were going to have a laugh, she was so full of life and it infected everyone around her.
People would always use Mum’s name with a certain inflection, a kind of, shocked, MUUM NAAN or DOOORA.
She loved to provoke a reaction, she enjoyed taking people out of their comfort zone and she always did it with a twinkle in her eye.
I, like all of you, tried to be disapproving and would try not to smile or laugh, but she made it impossible because it was always so good natured.
I would like to share with you just a couple of stories of Life with Mum:
Mum came to stay with us a couple of years ago for the New Year celebrations.
She, just like us was not keen on this particular day and so we stayed at home and had a few drinks…
By two o’clock in the morning, I had been out-drunk and I was comatose on the settee. Mum and Lindsay were still dancing around the living room to Elvis tunes…
By four o’clock Lindsay was ready to raise the white flag and go to bed.
Mum was having none of it.
Lindsay tried to out maneuver Mum by telling her we had run out of alcohol.
Mum promptly reached down to her bag and produced a bottle of Baileys, exclaiming, ‘good job I brought this then’…
They finally turned in at about six o’clock!!!
Shall we talk about ansaphone messages?
If any of you ever had the pleasure of one of Mums messages you will know what I mean.
They went on and on and on and on…
One of the messages I had recently lasted about five minutes.
Mum was talking to me, but kept berating herself because she forgot what she was ringing for.
She then broke down laughing and blamed me because, ‘I had made her laugh.’
She used to tell me that the reason that she left messages like that was because she knew she would be winding me up…..and she loved winding me up.
One person that has a lifetime of memories with Mum is Barbara, or Aunty Barb as she is known to us.
She has been a friend and confident of Mums for over 60 years.
That is a serious friendship.
In typical Mum style she told Barbara, in a not so subtle way (in the form of a fridge magnet)
That, ‘you’ll always be my friend, because you know too much’.
This was my Mum and yes I’m biased, but every person that I have ever met, that knew my Mum says she is one in a million, a lovely person, she was unforgettable and always left a little piece of her that made an impression on those that had the fortune of knowing her.
I would like to read a poem that I think Mum would approve of and if she could say it, this is what she would say to you all..
At every turning of my life
I came across
Friends who stood by me
Even when the time raced me by.
I smile and
Bid you goodbye.
No, shed no tears
For I need them not
All I need is your smile.
If you feel sad
Do think of me
For that’s what I’ll like.
When you live in the hearts
Of those you love
You never die.
We will love you always Mum, Nan, Dora, Do