I have referred to this quote from my favorite author and my favorite book often. This is a children's book, but I find the message is for all ages. The book is The Last Dance by Carmen Agra Deedy. It is the speaks to the love of families and the cycle of life. In the story, the grandfather tell his grandchildren that every human being has the right to three things in life:
To Dance. The great thing in life is not so much to dance well,
but whether one is willing to dance at all.
To Sing, Even if you sing off-key. The crow has as much right to
a voice as the nightingale.
To Tell Stories. Those we love are never really gone as long
as their stories are told.
My mom was born on October 8, 1917 and she died on October 6, 2002. It has been eleven years which doesn't seem possible. There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about her, especially now that I am back in Douglas. The other day I was at the ATM early in the morning and a man asked me if I was Margaret's daughter. I told him I was and he told me he served on the City Council with her and how much he thought of her. I was very touched by that.
We try to get together as a family and go to dinner during October so we can tell stories to keep her memory alive. Cameron was only three when she died and I truly believe that he remembers her even more because we get together.
The last few Octobers things have gotten in the way and we haven't done as well as in the past. But this year, we were able to get together with Judy, Ken, Teresa, Kayla, Kerri, Chris, Cameron, and Patrick. Patrick was here from California and it was so good to have him be a part of this.
My mom was absolutely crazy about Cameron. He could do no wrong. And if you knew my mom, she was always strict with me and with my kids. But for Cameron, there were no rules........... Just before she died, we went to eat dinner at Carrabas for Kerri's and Cameron's birthday. My mom was in a wheelchair at the end of the table. Cameron did something he shouldn't have and Kerri started to "discipline" him. My mom said she better not discipline him and she took her fork and tried to poke Kerri's hand. It was really funny and hard to recreate in words. So we went back to the scene of the "stabbing" for dinner this year.
I know that she would be very proud that I am here in Douglas with Teresa. And I know she would be very proud of the job that I am doing. A job of a superintendent is one of the most difficult jobs around with all of the politics--both local, state and at the national level. I wish that we could talk as I know she would give me good advice. But I also know that she would very much approve of the way I have handled things and risen above the negative people who are out there.
She was one of a kind and many ways and I am proud to be her daughter!! Her stories will live on in all of our lives.............