Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The day the stories died....

We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.
                         Johann Wolfgang von Goethe



The song American Pie, by Don McLean, has always been the song that ran over and over in my head, since that very first time I heard it. I still believe it was one of the best-written songs of its time. There is one line that has taken on a different lyric for me, this past year.

The day the stories died’ now replaces that line 'The day the music died' when those lyrics dance in my head. One year ago today, my Mom passed away, and those lyrics changed for all of her children and those who loved her. This was one of the most difficult days of my life. I have to admit even after one year, I still struggle with the loss.

You see, I believed my Mom and I never had anything in common, and we butted heads often in our younger days. It appears to me now that those tempestuous teen years were more like a battle with myself. There was no way, back then, that I would have ever admitted the fact that we were indeed cut from the very same cloth.


Our childhood growing up during the sixties and seventies, like others of that time was not always an easy one. Our family was large, our house was small and crowded, and our Dad worked endless shift worker hours. Even with all that shift work, money always seemed to be an issue. In spite of all this turmoil and often times’ strife, our Mom made all the difference in our lives. With our Mom’s incredible imagination, unfaltering optimism, and her gift of storytelling, we believed we were the richest children in that village where we grew up.

Our Mom could turn those seemingly insignificant moments in her life, into an epic story of all time, to the delight of all of us. I remember we all listened intently whenever she said,“I remember”.

There were stories about her growing up in a beach town on # 2 Highway in the thirties and forties. Tales of being a “five foot nothing” young waitress and where famous world wrestlers would drop into Louie’s diner and order everything on the menu. They would leave her a big tip, lift her high into the air and tell her they would see her on the way back. They knew her by name. Tales of growing up in a tourist town where she would get to swim with her friends in Lake Ontario, after her mother and herself, finished cleaning the summer homes of the rich Americans. Fascinating, exciting tales that while sitting there watching her spin them we would hang on every word.


I want to thank our Mom for the richness and love she gave to all of us. I know life was not always easy but you took us on the greatest of adventures in our imaginations. You stirred our longings and desires to experience life to its fullest and made us who we are today, optimistic, strong, kind, and compassionate.

I also want to thank our hardworking Dad who was also full of stories from long ago. He had a keen wit and a great sense of humour. The “joke time joke time” sessions made us all laugh even if they were goofy. We are all doing our part to keep all those stories alive, and keep your gifts from dying. We miss you both but we know you are together. Thanks for making us who we are. Your selfless generosity through-out our lives has spread its wings.


So, that famous line; 'The day the music died' and my version; 'The day the stories died', need not be true. Neither, the music nor the stories die. They live on in the words and music of others who loved them. They are passed on and on, never-ending like the love that will never die.


Later. 

35 comments:

  1. Hope you are alight there.
    What a lovely tribute to your mum - we will never forget our mums and what they taught us.
    Love and hugs M xoxox

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  2. What a heartwarming post. I have often thought that American Pie is the most iconic song in history. So much history packed into one song. One of my favorites, for sure.

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  3. Hugs to you, My Friend. I know that my Mom still thinks of her Dad everyday (think of him often myself) and last January marked 12 years since he passed. This post is a beautiful tribute to your folks. I bet your Mom is smiling.

    The quote you started with is a good one and one that I will continue to ponder during my morning 4-wheeler ride during chores.

    Your Mom sounds like a wonderful lady that God used to touch many lives!

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  4. Lovely, I wish I could have heard the stories!

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  5. Bravo! A literal masterpiece full of love. This is beautiful. You touched my dark heart.

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  6. lovely post!
    Mom's and Dad's are the best.

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  7. Blessings. The stories will always be with you. Make sure your children hear them too.

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  8. You will always have them both in your strong and loving memories.

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  9. What a loving tribute to both your parents!

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  10. We hold the memory of our parents and their stories in our hearts.{hugs}

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  11. Memories help color our world, even when the people attached to them have departed. Thanks for sharing some of yours! Hugs to you and yours on another anniversary.

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  12. "To live on in hearts we leave behind is not to die".

    The stories are the essence of our lives. My father died in 1989, in the little community where he lived most of his life people have stories about him, all bring a smile and he lives again! I think we were so lucky to be born when things were harder to get. Parents do not entertain children like they used to and it is such a loss. Savour the memories they are unique and irreplaceable.

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  13. It's nice to hear your memories of your parents' stories. So awesome they passed that story-telling gift on to you. You're right, neither the stories nor the music will die. Sometimes they might take a little break, but they will live on. I know that song well too.

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  14. i think you know how lucky you were/are. but if not, i will say, you're life was rich to have such a wonderful, supportive mother. she will always be with you buttons, always and forever!!!!

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  15. You have expressed your love for your family in an outstanding way! I send you hugs on this day that has such memories for you. I know about those memories. Yesterday marked the 33rd year of my own mother's passing, and she is with me every day. Hugs, Nellie

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  16. A beautiful story. I think we all had times when we didn't appreciate our parents but as we got older we did. This is a lovely tribute to yours and yes the stories live on through you and yours.

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  17. A wonderful, reflective post, Buttons.

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    1. But you fooled them all. Your grandchildren will remember your stories and be able to pass them on to their grandchildren because they are written.

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  18. Great tribute to your Mom and Dad. Anniversaries are always a time of remembrance. sometimes it's hard.

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  19. You say the stories died, but that is not the case. They live on in you, and to those you pass them to. This is a very nice tribute to your Mom and family, and don't forget, your Mom was a teenager once herself and probably knocked heads a few times with your. Grand Mother. Your parents did things right with you as to ethics and morality. All that is left to say is "Well done"!

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  20. Stories live on forever! This was a nice tribute to both your parents...and your grandchildren will know them, through your stories!

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  21. Beautifully written Grace! The stories live on through you!

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  22. Aw what a sweet tribute. Your Mom my Mom we all strive not to like our Moms and yet as we look in the mirror we have become them. I do laugh about that. Moms are special it's just too bad we don't figure that our early on.
    You take care now.
    MB

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  23. A lovely tribute to your mum and dad.

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  24. A most wonderful post.
    A most wonderful tribute.

    All the best Jan

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  25. Keep the stories going with your daughters and grand-daughter. Lovely post.

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  26. Sweet Friend,

    The stories will never die, they'll remain close to our hearts.
    Sending hugs your way.
    Sandy

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  27. thank you for sharing her delightful waitress story! all of us "listening," strangers really, are tag-along, benefactors. hugs, dear.

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  28. Lovely Grace . . .
    She is smiling . . .

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  29. oh! my friend, I feel for you, seems that year has happened so fast! I know the months since my mom passed are flying by! So many new "firsts" without them. First Christmas, etc. And the first time I thought of her, our you and your mom without tears(I haven't gotten there yet, but I know I will) those stories will never die, they will live on in your heart and memories, and in those you share with your family

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The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

Thank you so much for your comments, they mean more to me then I could ever express. Hug B

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