A Poem from My Mother

My pride and joy, that’s what you are.
You are my life, my guiding star.
When I am weak you make me strong.
It’s been you teaching me all along.

For all the times I let you down,
I’m sorry I wasn’t there.
Please know I was thinking of you.
If not for you, I wouldn’t care.

I’d have given up so long ago.
Just something I think you should know.
Your life means more than does my own,
In case sometimes it hasn’t shown.

—Alice Dalee, 2012

On the same scrap of paper she wrote me this:

Sky,

I know what it is to think and feel there’s no hope and death seems like the answer. Not fully knowing your story, I only mention my own story so you know you saved my life when I’d given up on my own. Pregnant, I’d tried to give up but your life means something more and saved mine.

R.I.P., mom.

May 15, 1974–October 26, 2014

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