Mom was one of those people who was just full of love. She loved her family. She and my father had this intense relationship that included arguing and fighting and then lots of happier times. That was just how they loved. She loved us kids and would do anything for us. I remember several years ago, I fell at work and reinjured an old break just above my ankle. My sister had just left for Boston, so there was no one here to take care of me. Mom and Dad were already planning on coming out a week from then to visit us girls. As soon as she heard I was injured, she stuffed a bag full of clothes and drove out to take care of me that week. When it was time for Dad to join us, she drove the 6 1/2 hours to pick him up, turned around, and brought him back for their family vacation. She never thought about it; she just did it. She was also constantly trying to hug us and told us often that she loved us.
Mom loved kids. She was the youngest of three and always had dreams of having a house full of her own children. Life doesn't work out the way that you plan, and they were lucky to get the two of us. As I have said before, I had always dreamed of giving her a house full of grandchildren. So, she spent her time loving on other people's babies and kids.
Mom also loved to help people. She would get teary any time someone showed her the slightest bit of kindness, too. I remember being in a public restroom. A deaf woman was having difficulty figuring out those new sensor sinks. Mom showed her how to use it and the woman signed, "Thank you." If you don't know, this looks very much like someone is blowing you a kiss. Mom automatically assumed the woman was blowing her kisses for her help and got all emotional and did it back.
When I called to talk to her on the phone around Christmas, I could tell she had no idea who I was. When I said, "I love you," she got all choked up on the other end of the line. It wasn't the "oh, I miss my daughter and she loves me" kind of choked up, though. It was the "Isn't this young woman sweet? I don't know her, but she is telling me that she loves me." So, she simply said, "Thank you." It was a little strange to not hear her returning the sentiment, but I don't really need to hear it anymore. I know she still loves us on some level.