Today is my mother's birthday. She would have been 77 years old. For some reason it is less painful to look at pictures of when she was younger than recent photos.
1936 - just a few months old
Here she is when she was 3 years old with her brother.
Again with her younger brother - she is 9 years old in this picture - the same age as Cate.
One year later - her family at Christmas.
1948 - Janet with her siblings.
1951 - Janet with her mother, Florence. Graduating from junior high school.
1956 - 20 years old
1955 - 19 years old (far right)
1956 - My mother's father moved the family to Taiwan for a year where he was involved in Malaria research. Here she is with her younger sister and parents - age 20.
1956 - Taiwan. Janet, ShuHong and Linda.
My mother gave this autographed photo to my father in 1957 - she was 21 years old. So lovely.
They were married in 1958.
This April my parents would have celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary.
My mother's birthday was always celebrated in conjunction with Valentine's Day. Click on this link to see a post I wrote on her birthday in 2010. She was sharing with the family some Valentines she had saved throughout the years. Some dated back to the early 1900's. My mother always had a way of making experiences meaningful - extra special and memorable. We are trying to carry on her legacy.
The constant rawness of the emotions that I felt when my mother passed away has faded. It comes in spurts now - when I least expect it. Most of the time I can control my tears and prevent myself from thinking about it too much. It may not be the most healthy way to grieve but it feels natural for me. But the dull ache always remains. I miss her so much.
We are gathering as a family today to honor my mother. We have some special things planned that I will post about later.