05-26-18 – Blog Queen - Sarah Raplee

Thursday, June 18, 2015

(Off topic) In Remembrance

Happy Thursday Everyone! Thanks for stopping by. I’m Terri Molina, and I write Tex-Mex romance. You can learn more about me (should you choose) at

This month we’re discussing charities, but, as usual, I’m posting in a different direction.  Yesterday I turned 53 years old....a number I never thought I’d see.  Not because I’m sick or anything, I just assumed that because many in my family die at an early age, I would too. Yes, I can be morbid sometimes.  

We didn’t plan anything big....I don’t usually have parties for my birthday. I think the only one I had was when I turned 21 and my sister gave me a surprise party.

This is the cake my daughter made for my
birthday. I think it means I'm officially a dinosaur. 
This year I’m planning my own celebration with all my children (my daughter, Rebecca, is flying in from LA). We’re going to see Jurassic World, then have an early dinner. When we get home we’ll go swimming, then my daughter is going to act out a scene she did in acting class (with an assist by my son) then we’ll have cake that my daughter Amanda made (she loves to bake!) then we’re going to do a Sing Off battle where we lip sync and “perform” a song.  I think my kids are most excited about that. haha

Anyway, yesterday wasn’t just another day for me to ‘ring in a new year’, it was also a day of remembrance because 40 years ago, on June 17th, was the day we laid my mother to rest.  Yes, she was buried on my thirteenth birthday....hellava way to start my informative teenage years.  On January 20th of this year, she would have been 80 years old. As a dedication to her that day I posted a blog about her.  If you’ll indulge me, I’d like to post it here as well.

Josephine Martinez Molina
January 20, 1935 - June 15, 1975 

It's so true when they say your life can change in an instant. I've always believed things happen for a reason, that there's a purpose for why or when. Events in your life, good or bad, build the person you become. You just don't realize it until later if they made you better or stronger.

My mom died on Father's Day, 1975, two days before my thirteenth birthday. I remember the day vividly; waking up at eight in the morning and seeing my oldest sister climbing into my aunt's car. My first thought, before I fell back asleep was, "she must be going to the hospital because mom died." Yeah, pretty morbid thought to have, but I just had that gut feeling. In fact, several months before, when my brothers and sisters and I gathered on the floor around my mom's easy chair and she told us she had to go into the hospital my first question to her was, "are you going to die?"

She spent a lot of weeks in the hospital and in that time I mourned her loss. I just knew she wasn't going to come home. And, a couple of hours later, when my cousin came to the house and ushered us into our Suburban without caring if we'd had breakfast, I knew.
When he dropped us at the entrance and said to go to the nurse's station. I knew.
When we rode up into the elevator to the fourth floor, my younger brother and sister chattering and laughing, I knew.
When the floor nurse told us to go to the room opposite the one our mother was in, I knew.
And when I opened the door and found it full of my family, tears streaming down their cheeks, my brother standing still against the window, his expression blank...I knew.

Over the years, as I got older, I thought a lot about what it must have been like for her, raising seven children, alone, widowed at the age of 36. As a child, I didn't give her the respect she deserved--children rarely do when they're young. But, I was number 5 in the bunch (of 7), and I didn't feel like she cared about me as much as the others. I now know, with that many children, it's hard to give time to just one. Especially when all they do is fight...yeah, we fought often...not physically, verbally. I used to wonder if maybe she begged God to take her away.

When I started having children I used to think: don't let me be like her.  When, in fact, I want to be like her. She was strong and caring and loving and she didn't let anything break her.
I don't know what kind of relationship we would have had if she lived, but I like to believe we would have been close.

I think about her often, especially during the holidays when my children are gathered around me.  I wonder if she knows how much I love her and miss her. And I hope I've made her proud.

There's a song by Christina Aguilera called Hurt, that resonates with me and sums up a lot of what I would say if she were here today. But, most of all, I would tell her Thank You. 

Here are the lyrics and you can click the link to hear the song.

Seems like it was yesterday when I saw your face
You told me how proud you were but I walked away
If only I knew what I know today
Ooh ooh
 I would hold you in my arms
I would take the pain away
Thank you for all you've done
Forgive all your mistakes.
There's nothing I wouldn't do
To hear your voice again.
Sometimes I wanna call you but I know you won't be there
Oh, I'm sorry for blaming you for everything I just couldn't do
And I've hurt myself by hurting you
Some days I feel broke inside but I won't admit
Sometimes I just wanna hide 'cause it's you I miss
And it's so hard to say goodbye when it comes to this, ooh, whoa
Would you tell me I was wrong?
Would you help me understand?
Are you looking down upon me?
Are you proud of who I am?
 There's nothing I wouldn't do
To have just one more chance
To look into your eyes and see you looking back
Oh, I'm sorry for blaming you for everything I just couldn't do
And I've hurt myself, oh, oh, oh.
If I had just one more day
I would tell you how much that I've missed you since you've been away
Oh, it's dangerous
It's so out of line
To try and turn back time
I'm sorry for blaming you for everything I just couldn't do
And I've hurt myself by hurting you

Thank you for reading.


Judith Ashley said...

Thank you for sharing this, Terri. Your mom really isn't gone, you know. She's alive in your memories and now in mine but most important - she's alive in your heart. Some say charity begins at home and it begins within us. The dictionary includes "an act of generosity" as a definition of charity. IMO Forgiving ourselves for whatever we blame or criticize ourselves for is where charity starts.

Sarah Raplee said...

I read an magazine article recently in which a hospice doctor said there are four things a person who is dying needs to say to and hear from their loved ones. You have expressed them all in your post.

"Thank You."
"I love you."
"Forgive me."
"I forgive you."

Your Mom would be proud of the amazing woman you've become.

Terri Molina said...

Thank you Judith and Sarah. I appreciate the comments.