My mother was born on May 2nd, 1940...

So happy birthday, mommy, you would be what? 61 now? 61.... it still seems so young in my mind's eye. People aren't supposed to die at 54... in fact, it's just not allowed; today would be another 7 years since then on the burner, and to me, that's just another 7 years without you, another 7 years of being unsure of myself, another 7 years of wondering if I will ever be the same. I mean, sure, I know your birthday is supposed to be no big deal... I know that it would just be another year to add to the fire, another year closer to your ever-present death had you still been alive... but goddammit, how I would love to send you a mushy card right now, how I would love to celebrate your life. People tell me over and over again that, yeah sure you're my mother, and you're dead, but that I should be completely over anything upsetting me about you anymore... Well, this is your birthday, and I'm upset. I'm sick of feeling guilty; I'm sick of feeling that if I'm sad over the fact that you're dead, I should pretend like nothing is wrong and that I should just go ahead and conform to society, thinking that nothing at all is wrong. Fuck everyone. It's a special day, and I'm allowed to feel a little down, goddammit!

In celebration-- my mother was a beautiful person... I can remember how her smile would light a room as soon as she entered, I can remember how her laugh affected us all, and especially, I can remember how great it felt to be a part of her. I take the cycle of life very seriously, and every year, I study my cycle of grief and just wonder... what will I be like at that age? Will I have children that love me? Will I have a loving husband, loving relatives? I can only hope that I will have as beautiful and as fulfilling a life as she did... even if she did die at 54, she will always hold my heart, and I will always remain true to her and the vision of the woman she would want me to be. You were a wonderful woman, and for those 13 years of my life, I am eternally greatful. I love you.

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