Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cherry Blossom Intricacies

Today, the sisters (my mother's sisters) made our way around the river basin to enjoy the cherry blossoms. The sky was endlessly blue and we walked inches under a cloud of snowballs. As we made our way to the FDR memorial, Mary and Polly paused. I turned and saw them embracing. "We're having a Cici moment," Polly explained, and she put her arm around me. Cici would have so loved to be with her sisters enjoying the flowers and bright sunshine. I felt awkward yet privileged. These women knew my mother her whole life. They were sisters and nothing can compare to or replace that.

On the other hand, I am so grateful that I got to share the weekend with them. I see my mother in each of them: her prowess, her compassion, her temper, her unconditional love. They made me feel welcome. They let me talk about my mother. They made me laugh.

Standing in a sea of white petals and tourists, I imagined what my mom would be doing. She would have pulled a branch to her nose and taken in the scent. Putting the flowers to pursed lips as if to kiss it, she would have proposed, "How can someone not believe in a higher power? Look at this craftsmanship." Holding out the flower for me to examine, she'd continue, "Somebody had to design those intricacies."

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