I have a new prayer song I sing at Karaoke. For you. To you. It’s called Good Mother and it’s by one of my favorite singer -songwriters- Jann Arden. She’s Canadian. She is really funny and great in live concerts.
I used to really like the song Good Mother when you were here, physically (saying “when you were alive” just hurts my heart). But afterwards, it felt like I was lying when I was singing that song- tricking people, including myself, that my mother is still around, because the words are in the present tense.
And it was this one line in particular that would choke me up- “and her voice is what keeps me here.” I couldn’t finish that line ever, once you passed away. It felt like a reminder to me of how crazy and painful it is to be living when you are not.
So I put it aside as a song I wouldn’t be singing. I don’t remember what it was recently, however, that made me want to sing it again. I don’t know if I heard someone else sing it, or someone mention it. But I was trying, line by line, to get through. And I’m sure that “killer” line for me was scary for me to approach each time.
But the more I sang it, the more I felt the truth of it. I mean, I DO have a good mother. I have had a good mother. The best mother I could have ever asked for. And if all this stuff about life after death is true, I still have a good mother, just in a different form. It’s still you. No one could ever replace you, as I’ve said time and again in my other posts. And I have to remember that it is your voice that keeps me here. I am trying to believe and trust and hope that it’s not just the words of your voice that I remember- from past memories- that keep me here. But words from you that I hope to hear presently and in the future. New words from you, because I want to feel that you still speak to me through all that time and space. I want to believe that my mom is still here with me.
So in that case, it is not unbelievable that I am still living even though my mom has passed away. With this new way of thinking for me, this new perspective, it is in fact the reason that I am able to live on, after you passed away. The reason I am able to keep here, “feet on ground, heart in hand,” is because of my mother’s voice. It has to still be with me. She has to still be with me. You still must be with me if I can keep on going and growing and learning and living. This is what I have to believe.
So on most days when I am out at karaoke, I start the night with Good Mother. I imagine singing it to you. And I hope that you can hear my prayer to you. My thanks to you. My undying gratitude- yes, pun intended- for having you as a mother. Not in the past, but in the past, present and future. Forever and always. You are the best mom I will always have. Thank you for keeping me dreaming and grounded, balanced, and feeling loved.
Each time I sing the song, I try to let those two lines- “I’ve got a goooood mother. And her voice is what keeps me here” – ring out louder, richer, and prouder. I’m still working on getting it better. I need to sing it without wavering or cracking from over emotion or sadness. I need to get to the point where it is powerful and resonant from utter gratitude and love. I need to get to the point where I sing it so deeply and strongly that I feel you feeling it.
I am tired of the people who tell me that I need to move on and let it go. This is not some breakup with a boyfriend or a silly romance. THIS IS MY MOTHER. I am not putting that behind me, because she is with me, every step of the way. She has to be. She is not my past or something to move on from. She is my whole being. And I am taking her with me, respectfully. Not to hold her back or take away her freedom. But to allow us both to soar. And to let her know she will never ever be forgotten.
Love you, Mom.