My mam, Valerie Anne

13 Jun

Today is the 9th anniversary of the death of my mam.

It was a sudden, cruel and life changing shock. She was only 51 and all we had left [Dad had moved to the States when I was 9 or so…mam brought the three of us up on her own]

My mam was a lovely, gentle, kind lady. She’d left home at 16 and become a nanny for the Peart family. Lived in at their grand house. I’m not sure I know how many she looked after but I think it was two. She’d also done some work at a solicitor’s office. I’m not clear on all the details. I should have written things down.

She used to live more or less next door to my dad. They went to the same school too. They married in 1969 and went to live in Cyprus where my dad was stationed. Mam clearly loved her life in this little island. She always talked about it with smiles and laughter. I wish I’d listened harder, made notes, paid more attention.

She was a fabulous gardener – again – I should have listened harder to her top tips! I could have learned a lot.

She had a great laugh – sounded like Mutley!! Infectious. She had a dry sense of humour – well, she had to, she liked Cliff Richard!

In the initial years after her death I regretted not paying more attention. I was scared I would forget her. Scared the sound of her voice would fade. Why hadn’t I ever recorded her? I was sad she would never form a part of my future. Angry that I wouldn’t be able to look after her and do nice things for her.

Thing is, in reality I have found she is more with me than I ever thought she would be – and I find myself listening to her, even though she’s not here. Yes I have wished she could see what I’ve achieved; been with me through the adoption process; been my daughter’s grandma. That wasn’t to be. But. She’s been alongside me throughout – and still is. I can hear what she would advise me; I can hear her laughing at things we’d both find funny; I can hear the things she would chat to Squidger about. I can hear her as I find myself saying things she would!

Thing is, I’ve heard her every single day for the last 9 years and I reckon I’ll be hearing from her for a long time to come yet.

See, mam – I was listening…

Valerie Anne
18 Feb, 1951 – 13 June, 2002

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2 Responses to “My mam, Valerie Anne”

  1. Milla June 13, 2011 at 10:59 pm #

    How sad. You must miss her my mum was born about 9 yrs before yours and still seems young now.
    Moving Stuff,Sam.

  2. Tracey July 31, 2011 at 11:46 pm #

    I can identify with all of this, my mum died 9 years ago also. I too have her voice in my ear. Thank you for expressing it so nicely. X

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