Yes, I know Mother’s Day is officially on the second Sunday in May, and that was yesterday. However, in 2008, today, May 11, was the second Sunday in May, and a Mother’s Day that I will never forget.
It was the last ‘day’ I spent with my mother, Amy. It wasn’t the last time I would see her or even spend many hours with her. It was, however, the last day she, and my daughters, Lauren and Kellie, and I all spent together. We also knew at the time, that unless some miracle occurred, it would be our last Mother’s Day, together, as she had been diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer.
We spent the day doing whatever Mom wanted. We pigged-out on Chinese food. Well, really, Mom did not pig-out, but rather ate a bit of all of the entrees that I chose for us. My mother loved Chinese food and pizza — foods that I am sure she was well into her adult life before even trying them. She was a traditional Southern woman, who spent more time in the kitchen than she did any other part of the house, much less a restaurant. She gave me some pictures and a few little things I had given her over the years. Resting in ‘her spot’ in the living room and petting Will, my parent’s dog, she was very concerned about what would happen to him when she passed.
While we thought she would have a few months, she didn’t. Thirteen days later she died, unexpectedly but quickly. She had a pulmonary embolism and her life on earth was done. Pancreatic cancer is very painful and debilitating, and she was spared from much of the suffering that usually comes with the disease.
Pink was my mom’s favorite color. She favored the pastel pinks the most. My mom was not one of those ‘in your face’ type of people. Oh no, if she wanted you to do something, you were agreeing to do it before you even realized you had been asked–very sly, she was. She was also very smart and all-knowing. Geez, I wish I had gotten some of those traits from her. I look at lot like she did, although, she had much darker hair than I do, even now. She had very few gray hairs, when she passed. She could have shared that little genetic piece, also. This is a picture of my mother, six days before her death. As usual, she was in pink. My sister, Kim, was with us when this photo was snapped. Please excuse my ever-present closed eyes squint. Given when this photo was taken, it is precious to me.
Even though her favorite color was pink, I recently had a Mixology Monday on how to create several shades of pink. Mother would have loved each one of them. Just looking back at them now remind me of her wearing a pink dress and me in a daffodil yellow dress for Easter many years ago…..
Similarly, Sweet Song Bird by Evey’s Creations featured a pastel pink rocker for her mother last week that had me in tears. That post added more fuel to the fire that was already smoldering with memories of my mom. Thank you Evey, for sharing a glimpse of your mom with us.
So, with pink being out, what color should I mix? I decided on purple since it is often paired with pink and is the color that represents pancreatic cancer. Some groups that advocate for pancreatic cancer awareness, information and survival have adopted the purple pansy, as their symbol. Since pansies are often multi-toned, I am sharing two recipes for purple colors. With our New Orleans Purple, Enchanted Lilac and these two custom shades, you could paint the most beautiful pansy.
The first color I mixed was Mountain Page Purple. My mother hails from the community of Mountain Page, NC. It is located in Henderson County, which is western North Carolina. For Mountain Page, I mixed New Orleans Purple and Minnesota Pink Lady’s Slipper. I used 3 parts NOP to 1 part MPLS.
The make the next color I used Simply White and New Orleans Purple and named it Purple Mountain. The mix ratio on it is equal parts of New Orleans Purple and Simply White. As you know, all of our colors are named after places, cities, states or regions. You can’t think about American heritage and the color purple and not have the phrase “purple mountains majesty” flood into your brain. The phrase comes from America The Beautiful, the popular, early 1900’s, patriotic song. The lyrics were written by Katharine Lee Bates, and the music was composed Samuel A. Ward. (Ward just happens to be my mother’s maiden name.) I found four peaks named “Purple Mountain” in the US. They are located in Alaska, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. There may be some I missed. If so, please let me know.
I believe Mother’s Day is a very bittersweet holiday for many. I know it is for me. I think of my mother and wish she were still with us. I regret that she never witnessed my daughter being a mother. I look at my daughters and am filled with happiness and awe. They have become intelligent and beautiful women. I think of ladies who have lost children and know it must ache so to lose a child. I also think of women who have given up their children because they knew they were not at the proper station in life to give them a good quality of life. Whatever your type of Mother’s Day you had, I hope it was filled with joy, peace, love and precious memories.
Mountain Page Purple: 3 parts New Orleans Purple to 1 part Minnesota Pink Lady’s Slipper
Purple Mountain Purple: 1 part New Orleans Purple to 1 part Simply White