Life Coach Magazine

Dim All The Lights

By Bren @Virtual_Bren

Do you know how a certain song will dredge up some old memories, whether good or bad?

That happened to me this morning on my way to work. I love my Sirius in my Jeep. Matter of fact, I don’t think I could ever go back to regular radio stations. I jam out to Disco, 70′s, and 80′s music most of the time.

This morning, Donna Summer’s Dim All The Lights was on the radio and it instantly took me back to my childhood.

My first home, a quaint little ranch on a street with maybe a dozen houses.

The time when my Mother was still living, my brother was playing football and baseball, and dad was always going out on the boat…fishing and drinking.

The time when I thought I was this fabulous singer; a world-class gymnast; and doing the Hustle and the Bus Stop to all the greatest Disco hits.

Then it hit me.

The other day, Harleena had posted about Ways of Deal with the Loss of a Love One. As I commented on her post, some emotions came rushing back.

At the young age of 11 years old, my Mother was ripped out of my life. I saw my Mother laying there on the bedroom floor while Dad pounding on her chest trying to revive her. The paramedics coming into the house and me being pushed out of the bedroom. Me and my brother sitting in the kitchen with my Aunt and Uncle scared. Me so scared I threw up what we had for dinner that night. I remember it clearly……. hot dogs and beans.

Dad getting into the ambulance with Mom and the paramedics. Me and my brother being taken down the road to my Aunt and Uncle’s house (on my dad’s side). Upset and scared because I knew nothing of what was going on. Then waking up at my Aunt and Uncle’s house, with Dad by the side of the bed, saying “Mom didn’t make it.”



In a matter of hours, my whole life was turned upside down. This once 11-year-old so full of life, love, and laughter had lost her Mother, her best friend, her confident and there was no way of getting her back.

That was the day I became a woman. I had to step up to the plate. Cook dinner as my Mother had taught me. Clean the laundry. Iron Dad’s work clothes. Make out grocery lists. Clean the house. I became the little woman of the house. My Mother had taught me well.

I remember going to the funeral home and picking out a casket, an outfit for Mom to wear, giving the mortician a photograph so he would know how to style Mom’s hair and what little makeup she ever wore.

I remember trying to be a ROCK for the family. Holding back my tears in public and crying all alone. I withdrew from people, friends, and school.

I remember the viewing before anyone arrived. My brother (5 years older) and I were at the casket looking at my Mother. It was so surreal! My brother touched her hand and told me to do so as well. “Feel her Bren. She’s so cold.” I made a joke about it, scared to touch her. I knew she wasn’t in there. She was with God in the heavens as she always said she’d be.

Family and friends visiting the viewing were crying; all trying to console my brother and I; some trying to console my Father; others out to accuse him of my Mother’s death.

I never cried at viewing. I walked around like I was an 11-year-old woman trying to hold a family together. Several trips to the bathroom where I would shed my tears. But why was I crying? How could I be so selfish to want my Mother, my best friend with me and not smiling down on me from the heavens?

I knew she was in a better place. Dad was an alcoholic and verbally abusive. The Friday night fights would cease. There would be peace in the house. But my insides were empty. How could I possible go on without her?

Thinking back now, I never fully grieved. I don’t think I truly understood what was happening. I had experienced death prior to my Mother but this was my best friend! Someone I was with every single day. Someone I sang with; laughed with; cried with. She was gone. Forever.

Til this day, I remember seeing my Mother on the floor in her bedroom. I know she passed there. I heard the gurgle, the last breath. I live with regret because I went to bed mad at my Mother that night because she wouldn’t let me have a chocolate pie. Or is that the story I’ve been saying all along and believe it? I don’t know. I will never know.

What I do know is I truly never fully grieved her death because I don’t think I knew how. When I remember her singing a song or hear her giggle, that’s when the flood gates open and I grieve once again, as I did this morning with hearing that one song…….

the flood gates opened and I grieved. I felt sorry for myself because God took away the best thing I ever knew. I was traumatized as a child and my life was never the same.

Yet, in those short 11 years, this woman who adopted me as an infant, was the only Mother I ever knew. She raised me to be the woman I am today. And although I am not ready to leave the life I’m currently in, I know when it is my time, my Mother will be there smiling and waiting for me with open arms.

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