Erin's Journals

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Just a thought… I don’t regret the things I’ve done; I regret the things I didn’t do when I had the chance. [Author unknown]

I’m calling this one “Buy the Damned Card” and you will know why once you’ve read or watched. I say ‘watched’ because you can see a video version of this journal on my Facebook page, or here on YouTube.

Mother’s Day is a few days off. Maybe you’re expecting a card, maybe you’re sending one. Maybe you feel like you have more than one mom so you’re buying that other person a card; we picked up one for Mira to give her today.

Maybe you’re talented like my sister and you make cards. She made this…

…and it was so pretty that I cut the front off so I can use it on a gift for someone else. I have such trouble throwing away gorgeous cards.

Maybe your mom has died and you wish she was here so you could buy or make her a card. That would be me.

And maybe you’re like me in that you aren’t expecting a Mother’s Day card because the person who would have sent you one is no longer here. There is no Happy Mother’s Day; it’s just a Sunday that happens to be a special one for a lot of women. And I honour all mothers for that, including our daughter-in-law Brooke on her special day as mother to Colin and Jane.

But let me tell you about the one card I regret not sending: it was to the same person I regret not getting one from. Stay with me here.

When Lauren was celebrating her first Mother’s Day, I thought: Well, she’s not my mom, and my mother never sent cards to her daughters who were moms – she’ll get one from Colin through Phil. So I didn’t send one. Now, 7 years on, I regret not sending that card with a depth of feelings that really isn’t logical. But feelings so rarely are.

Lauren didn’t send me one that year either. Wrapped in difficulties trying to feed Colin – a problem that led her to take a prescription that we believe stopped her heart (Domperidone or Motilium if you’re not familiar with our story; please get your heart checked if this drug is prescribed for you) – I’m sure she just didn’t have a chance to get out and buy one. We did our social media thing that day and shared loving tweets.

As you likely know by now, she died in the hours after her first Mother’s Day.

For weeks, I hoped against hope that a card from her would show up in our condo mailbox, just one more bit of proof that she was here, that we shared a life, that my daughter loved me. It never came.

I am grateful to have a plastic zip-up bag, repurposed from a bedding set, that I keep those cards in – those tokens of love and creativity from childhood on.

But if you’re holding back, it’s not too late. Just buy the damned card. Someone once wisely said, “What is grief, but unexpressed love?” Don’t add another reason to grieve, ever. Buy it. Make it. Send it. Email it. Make the phone call. You will not regret it, and how often in life do you get a promise like that?

Happy Mother’s Day. I’ll be back with you on Monday.


Rob WhiteheadThursday, May 5, 2022