The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Monday, November 24, 2008


Remembering Russell

My writing FINALLY seems back on track, even if my words are sometimes stuck behind the locked door of the train’s caboose.

It was nice to see the members of The Writing Mamas Salon and hear a great speaker.

The hour and a half went by quickly.

A few members told me about a retreat they had taken. Another said she would be unable to attend our final meeting next month because she would be in Argentina.

Another country!


That’s just where I needed to go.

And I know which one – Iceland!

I’m not sure why, but lately I’ve been obsessed with visiting Iceland. A friend suggested I visit her in Seattle instead and then we can head to Vancouver. 

She’s probably right. So why the need to retreat?

After nearly a week of the kids being home sick, living with cancer for more than two years, no real vacations (family get-togethers are lovely, but they really do NOT count), and having foot surgery that I thought would heal in a month but recently learned will be closer to a year – somehow it all seems too much.

Any one of these things could make me feel down, but combined, well, where’s the nearest overstuffed couch?  

Then I realize that none of them are the reason for feeling the way I do.

Monday is.

November 24th would have been my brother’s birthday -- that is if he were still around. He’s been dead for nearly 25 years.

Russell has now been gone longer than he was here.

As I write, I look at a small hammer he made with precise care in a metals class in junior high. He carved his initials, R.F., into its head. The tool has an almost modern design to it. Russell was an artist. Maybe one too sensitive for this world. Somebody who tried to ignore his demons but in the end they proved overwhelming. He died by his own hand. His creation sits on my desk. It is a reminder of him. Something he made. The touch of Russell’s hands still upon it.

When the anniversary of his death, or his birthday comes around each year, the enormity of his loss is present.

Perhaps the gift is in the remembrance.

There is a cemetery that I visit when I miss my deceased family members. I drive to the very top of its hill. There sits the Jewish area. I’m not sure why, but I seem drawn to it. I look at the headstones. I say silent prayers for each person, none of whom I know. I find comfort.

I will go there tomorrow. I will think of Russell.  I will lay down three stones. I will miss you.

By Dawn Yun

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This is poignant and beautiful. I'm so sorry about the loss of your brother. Your remembrance is a fitting tribute.

I think the body sometimes remembers anniversaries before our minds do. I'm sorry about your brother, and will think about him on his birthday.
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