Om May 10, 1942 my folks were becoming Mr. & Mrs. Charles Burgess:
They were both just short of their 20th birthdays….I look at this photo and try to imagine how happy they must have been….
Life was not easy for my Mom…she married a man who loved her dearly but could be difficult to be around sometimes. She never had a bad word to say about him or anyone else.
They had my brother Brad in 1948, after World War II, he was the apple of my folks eye.
When Brad was 4 years old, my Mom lost a full term daughter. She was never the same….how she got through it back then when NO one talked about it, and she couldn’t either….I will never know.
In 1954 I came to be….
Nothing like my brother, who was a pretty easy kid, but feisty and hard to manage. Little was known back then about hyper-active kids. And boy, was I one of those! Of course a constant diet of sugar and candy did not help the situation, but I totally understand why she always gave in…I was quiet for a few minutes.
We went through a lot together, my teenage years were tough. But she was always there…always willing to listen, and being a typical teenager I blew that off way too often. Somehow we got through those years.
One short failed marriage and then in 1979, I married my husband Wayne. Things got on the right track really fast, so we started a family right away and it was wonderful! The telephone call to my folks to let them know they had a grandson was the best call of my life!
Bryan Burgess McClay was born Septemeber 3, 1980 and our lives were just perfect!
I had come down from Nevada to have Bryan’s first birthday party with all of his grandparents and family, and when I walked through the door I knew she was in trouble. My brother came and took her to the hospital, my Dad was already in there. So she missed the birthday party…six weeks later she died in that hospital, having never left it. My Dad got out…this is one of my favorite photos of that day, bittersweet as it is:
Wayne eventually got to learn how to put the shoes on the correct feet! Poor Bryan….
The photos of Bryan’s first birthday always make me cry. Someone very important was missing.
She passed away a month after his first birthday. October 3, 1980.
And every year at this time I get really sad, we never got to have that wonderful “friends” doing things together type of time….I see so many blog posts about how through the years a mom and her daughter become friends and their relationship becomes so much richer.
Then I get mad….I was cheated out of so much so young….and it will never be OK…..ever….
The memories I have of my Mom have started fading a bit, never thought they would….but they are….we really had so few times when I was old enough to really remember them.
But this I know….My Mom, Lois Jane Harstad Burgess, did the best she could….loved me almost too much and was so sorry that she had to leave me….
I love you Mom,