Memories of my mother surface at odd times, times when I least expect them, times when I'm not prepared for the image of her face, the sound of her voice. I quote her, use her words to make my point, use her wisdom as mine. This is the way she lives with me now.
She lives with me in my days and in my nights. She lives with me at work and at home. She lives with me in ways I never expected and in some ways I did. Either way she lives with me and I am glad she does. I am glad that the memories I have of her have shifted, shifted from her last days to other days, days when she was healthy and active and alive and fun. Days when it would take my repetition of "Mom!" three times to pull her away from the book she read, days when she joked with my children by asking the person at the McDonald's Drive-thru if he got tired of being stuck in that little box that held the speaker, days when she would stop by my house unexpectedly.
I miss her. I don't worry about her now, not the way I used to worry. I know she's not on the floor, she's not hurt, she's not lonely or afraid. I do wonder though, sometimes when I'm alone and it's quiet and I think of her. I wonder if she misses us, if she misses the earth, if she misses life. I wonder this because she loved it all so much when she was here, loved us all so much. This is the way she lives with me now.