don’t let the turkeys get you down

my mom had a coffee mug collection, i had my favorites as did she. but the one that stuck with me the most was that phrase printed across a horribly illustrated picture. “don’t let the turkeys get you down.”

i thought of this with frequency over thanksgiving… and not because of turkeys (we chose to eat pineapple).

my mom oozed positivity. surprisingly so, for the hand she had been dealt in life. during the angst of my teenage years, this positivity bothered the hell out of me. (this should be common for any teenager in suburbia.) i dwell on this now. (this should be common for a mother on the verge of middle age.)

it’s strange to have a ghostlike presence in your life. a mother that is more than halfway gone, a mother untouchable, unreachable, unexpressive. i find her in the birds overhead. her voice flutters into my days with phrases i find myself repeating to my own son. i’m writing her story, the one she now won’t be able to tell herself.

so when negativity seeps in, when people toss their words like grenades (oh family dysfunction and holidays go so well together don’t they?) i hold my shield tightly, i think about how she raised me. i think about her spirit (it’s here in Maine with me i can feel it) and i continue forward with mothering and loving and living and grace.

on this day, it meant grabbing my camera and trudging through the mud.
focusing on the positive.
always, always… knowing she’d be proud.

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