I’m having a beer as I write this – it’s a cold one I kept at the back of the fridge next to the apples, especially for today. I don’t really drink much, but the last time I wrote you something, mommy, was 14 years ago – and it was a goodbye which I had to read to a bunch of people who never knew you the way that I did. So come on, have a seat, let’s reminisce a while…

Twenty nine years ago you asked if you could marry my dad. I was only six then and we were standing in the kitchen making hotdogs on a Saturday afternoon. Has it been that long? I will never forget your smile when I hugged you and said “yes, Blommie, I don’t mind.” As if you really needed my blessing. My sister was tiny then, four, I think – but she came running in and hugged your other leg tightly as if she also agreed.

Right there in that kitchen my life began. Right there, I met the first woman who ever loved me. I know it sounds corny ma, but you were my first love.

Remember that time, I think I was in high school, when I walked into your sewing room while you were typing on the computer and challenged you to type every word I read from Stephen King’s Pet Cemetery? Hehe, I started reading and your fingers danced across that keyboard like tap dancers on a wooden stage – 110 words a minute, was it? Anyway, you suddenly stopped and I boasted, “what’s the matter, can’t keep up old lady?” You looked up and said, “no, you read too slow.”

I can’t tell you how many times since then I’ve chuckled to myself about that, because now, I type faster than you. Okay almost, but the point is that I type because of you, and now, for you. You read this time mommy, and I’ll say stop.

I’ve never again heard the words “I love you” said quite the same way as when you used to remind me how much I meant to you. Until the day I repeated them to my own children. I have a son and daughter now and they know all about you, don’t worry – only the good bits I promise. I wish that they could have met you in person, you would’ve been an awesome grandma and I’m certain my daughter would have hugged your leg as well. My son would have spent hours on your lap playing with your chains. I think my sister kept your jewellery, but it doesn’t really matter because we both kept all of you.

You would’ve loved some of the people in my life too, and I’m pretty sure a few of the women would have had a very stern talking to – the last one especially – you would have warned me about her. And when I didn’t listen, you would have warned me against myself.

I am okay though, I found you in the lady you sent me to. She reminds me so much of you, I’m sure you would have made a formidable team. And she keeps me inline just like you did – between the two of you I’ve become me again.

I remember everything about you, I remember your life and I remember what all of that meant to mine. This letter has been a long time coming and every year I promised you that I’ll write and let you know how I’m doing. See? I remembered that too.

There is so much I want to tell you, so much has happened, but we’ve run out of time. The kids need to get to bed and the workload on my desk has started swaying on its own already, it’s deadline tomorrow. I wish we could do this more often, I wish you didn’t have to go just yet – but I know you’ll come back again, let me see you every so often.

I wanted you to know that I still feel your hugs, I still smell your perfume at times and I’m sure just the other day I saw you sitting on the floor, playing with the kids. I wanted you to know that it’s been a struggle, but I haven’t given up, I haven’t let them beat me. I just wanted to let you know that the little blonde haired boy you hugged in the kitchen that day has grown to be a man you would have been proud of.

But what I really wanted to say is happy birthday mommy. And happy mother’s day – I remembered the flowers this time, but someone ate your chocolates. I miss you today. I miss you every other day. Love you too much mom.

You can stop reading now, I’m beginning to type too slow.