31 Days, 31 People
Day 01: LINDA
Linda was shy. 5’4” tall, quiet, insightful and far more clever than you’d ever suppose at first encounter, Linda shaped so much of who I am today.
Her husband, a Vietnam Veteran, was a really good guy that came with a lot of challenges, there were an uncountable amount of times I wasn’t sure how she managed it all. She lost her son, the oldest of her three, when he was 15 years old. It changed her, I remember that very clearly. I was 11 when it happened, my memory of her before that loss is exactly what you might expect of an 11 year old. It’s patchy but I remember her love and kindness. I remember what music she liked. I remember her laugh and how hard she worked. She never stopped working hard but you could see her struggle with depression at times. It’d peek through just enough to catch if you were watching her closely. Overall, she kept everything together extremely well for her family.
I’m grateful that Linda was a part of my first 27 years of life. She played the most prominent role in guiding me in those years. What I learned the most from her was strength, endurance, and resilience.
I wish I’d known her more in my adult years, maybe just for my own perspective and insight. I think sometimes that in my thirties and beyond, I could have appreciated and understood her even more than I did as a kid. I appreciated her a lot but as I aged our conversations grew more rich and valuable. I can only imagine the things I could have learned from her over more time.
Through the ups and downs she lived, I learned a lot about what I want and do not want in my life. Linda taught me about independence and standing for what you believe in. She demonstrated patience like nobody’s business. She taught me a lot of life skills that I hold closely.
I’m grateful that I had such an amazing mom. I hope I can be even a fraction of that amazing for my own daughters.
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