Moments Big and Small

When my mom first got sick - or at least sick enough that I knew deep down that she probably wouldn’t get better - one thing that scared me the most was that even in my late 20s, there were so many “big moments” I hadn’t had yet. Knowing that if I ever got married or had kids or celebrated any major career accomplishment, it’d be without my mom, and that means it would be hollow, or incomplete.

It was Halloween 2018 when we found out that the cancer had spread to her brain, and that night she said to me, “I don’t want you to worry. I’m going to be fine. I’m going to be there when you sell your first pilot,” and if that ever does happen, it’s hard to imagine feeling the kind of joy that I would have if she were there with me.

In the almost six months since I lost my mom, there have been a few huge moments for me, and I desperately wanted to be here so I could share the good news - AKA update her on various email exchanges. But there have been tons of teeny, tiny small moments where I wish I could talk to her, or get her advice, or just complain about my day. It’s cliche but it’s true.

My mom and I hung out, like, all the time. We got brunch on the weekends and lunch during the week and talked on the phone at least once or twice a day. But more than that, she always wanted to do whatever she could to help me out in small ways- sending me coupons for Barnes and Noble and Panera, bringing me Tide pods for my dishwasher - because she wanted to do whatever she could to make my life a little bit easier. Obviously, I’m a grown up and these are things I’m capable of doing or buying myself, but she still worried about me and wanted to help me out. I still use her Barnes and Noble membership because I think she’d want me to. “It’s silly, save your money,” she’d say, or something like, “What, like I’m going to use it?”

And now that my mom is gone, I still have some of the last things she gave me to make my life just a little bit easier - a bottle of face cream, sunscreen - that I don’t know quite what to do with now that I’ve finished them. Even it seems silly, it’s hard to throw away something that connects me to another time when she was still here. When she’d be picking me up for brunch tomorrow and telling me what she thought of my show the night before and forcing Bed, Bath & Beyond coupons into my hand. But because I know my mother, I know what she’d tell me - that I’m being ridiculous and to throw them out. Unfortunately, as much as I love her, it doesn’t mean I always know how to listen to her voice in my head.

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