Something to Treasure – The Last Gift from My Mum

last gift from mumOne of the writing prompts for #FridayReflections, a blogging group I belong to, was to write a post  about something in my home that has been handed down to me.  I needed to describe it, take a photo and tell the history and meaning of this item.

Another option for a writing prompt was free writing so I could have taken the easy way out and selected that but when I started thinking about what to write, I remembered I did have something very special that I could write about.  Very special to me anyway.

It will be 29 years in June since my darling mother passed away, after a 10 year long battle with breast cancer.  Back in the late 70s and early 80s cancer treatment was very much in the experimental phase and my poor mum suffered with the treatment.  Countless rounds of chemo and radiation therapy – she had so much that in the end her hair never grew back.

At the time, my Mum was living with us for some of the time.  We thought Dad would outlive her but he was a cancer victim too, although it was so aggressive he was gone within 6 months of diagnosis.

I can remember the morning so clearly.  It was a chemotheraphy day for Mum and I took  a morning ‘cuppa’ into her while she was still in bed.  She must have known something because she gave me this beautiful jewellery box which my cousin had brought back from China as a souvenir for Mum.  It is covered in fabric with a beautifully embroidered top.  Although it has aged and probably needs a clean, I treasure it as it was the last gift my mother gave me.

Mum never had many possessions – she made sure her children had the best of everything at her expense – like many mothers do.  This jewel box had special meaning because my cousin (my godmother), was like a daughter to Mum and they were very close. Mum treasured this gift from exotic China especially as my cousin visited at a time when not many Westerners especially tourists, visited the country.  I am lucky that I carry on that special, loving relationship with her today.

embroidered lid pearls in a box

Mum pressed it into my hand and said she wanted me to have it.  I remember joking with her, and saying ‘I’ll just keep it until you come home’, although deep down I was concerned.

Mum never came home that day. She had two heart attacks over the next two weeks and then finally passed away peacefully – thanks to the morphine.

She was a beautiful soul, never complaining, even when we knew she was in pain and everyone who knew her loved her.

I would rather have my Mum, but now I keep her pearls in the jewel box, in pride of place on my dressing table.  The pearls need to be restrung so I don’t wear them, and the box is now a little worn but every day I see that box and it reminds me of a special woman who I was honored to call my Mum and who gave me so much to be thankful for in my life.

I shall treasure this last physical gift from my mum and will pass it on to my daughter in years to come.  However, I treasure more the gift she gave me of teaching me to be a caring, tolerant, compassionate and loving person, which are gifts more special than any material gift.  If I can be half as good as my Mum was, I will be doing more than okay.

pearls and box

Let’s Keep Sizzling!

 

This post was written for #FridayReflections. See where else I link up each week.

 

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21 thoughts on “Something to Treasure – The Last Gift from My Mum

  1. Mackenzie Glanville

    I feel honoured that you shared this story with us at Friday Reflections. You are such a beautiful person Sue. The jewellery box is divine what a beautiful keepsake. I am so sorry your parents suffered. I alms wrote on this topic, but I didn’t. I was going to share the tea cup that you see at the top of my blog as my photos flash through. The pink on with the lady. It belonged to a couple who travelled from England back in the 50’s it was a gift from her mother to her before she left England as it had belonged to her and she wanted her daughter to take something personal with her. This lady became my Grandmothers best friend. When she passed her husband Bill gave it to my Grandmother and she treasured it. Eventually my Grandmother handed it down to her daughter-in-law who is my mother. 5 years ago my mother entrusted it to me, one day I will hand it down also. I just love it. Sending you hugs and thank you again for sharing your story and memories with us.

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      I’m sure we all have special mementos Mackenzie and I love your story of the tea cup – I’ve always admired it because I love teacups! I’m so pleased you enjoyed the post. Have a lovely day my friend.

      Reply
  2. nabanita

    Anything that belongs to our loved ones which at a later point in time becomes their memory or which they give us as a gift becomes more than just a thing..Thanks for sharing this..I loved reading your story..

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Hellp Nabanita and thank you for your lovely comment. I’m pleased you enjoyed my memories and you are right the gift they give us takes on more significance and meaning when they are no longer with us. Have a lovely day.

      Reply
  3. [email protected]

    that was lovely Sue – I can’t imagine life without my mum, but I would love to know that a special keepsake came from her and reminded me of her every day. You certainly seem to have taken after your mum in many ways and that would bring her joy I’m sure xx

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Thanks Leanne. I still miss my Mum after all this time especially now that we have Ethan. She would have adored him. It is the little things like doing something and saying ‘oh I must tell Mum’ and then of course she isn’t there. Thank you for your lovely words my friend, I feel honoured to think I’m like my Mum and others can see that. Have a great week!

      Reply
  4. Monica Bruno

    I love this, Sue! Your mother sounds like a wonderful person, just like you are! I know what it’s like to hold on to these little treasures. I keep my grandmother’s nightgown and I’ll sleep in it sometimes to have (or help remember) what is was like to be embraced in her arms. There are people in our lives that mean so much that their passing leaves a permanent void in our hearts. But these little treasures help keep them close.

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Thank you Monica! Yes my mum was a beautiful soul and I still miss her after all of this time. As you say ‘these little treasures help keep them close’ it is a daily reminder of them and their love. Have a lovely week.

      Reply
  5. Maggie

    Thanks for sharing this. We have a house full of things from our parents and grandparents (even china from the old country!). They remind us of our family everyday.

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Thanks Maggie. I don’t think we fully appreciate our family history until we start to get older. It is lovely to have daily reminders of loved ones who are no longer with us. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely week.

      Reply
  6. Rev

    Oh, Sue. What a beautiful story. And how wonderful to have something to look at everyday to be reminded of your mother. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Oh thank you Rev. I hadn’t intended to write about this topic and only did because of the writing prompt. I’m so glad I did as it brought back beautiful memories of my mum. Have a lovely week.

      Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Thank you Toni! It is something I will treasure always and I still miss my mum more than ever. Have a lovely week my friend.

      Reply
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  8. Michele

    I loved this story. Something so small and seemingly insignificant can carry very precious memories and energy. I am helping my own father to battle right now, so I related to your story. I know it has been a long time since you lost your parents to cancer but I just want to say that I am sorry for your loss and I know how difficult it must have been.

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Thank you for your kind words Michele. It was a very difficult time and I still miss them both terribly. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your father during this challenging time. Thank for stopping by and have a lovely day.

      Reply
  9. Wendy

    Sue, I missed this post last month, but I just read it — and cried. (This is the second time one of your posts has made me cry today!) Your mother sounds like an amazing lady and that does not surprise me — she sounds like you. I am so thankful that we have become friends through blogging, and so thankful your mother raised “Sue.”

    Reply
    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Oh I’m sorry I made you cry but happy that my post moved you. Yes, my mum was an amazing lady and your last few words of your comment brought tears to MY EYES xxx thank you x

      Reply

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