Yesterday, a magazine came in the mail addressed to Squeegee Beckenheim and for a moment I felt this warm, radiating happiness. Then, I cried.
I remember the first time I received a magazine in the mail addressed to Squeegee Beckenheim or Tooky Clothespin. Calvin was so confused, but I immediately saw the Gilmore Girls reference and knew that my mom was behind it. Watching Gilmore Girls together was a staple of my high school years. My mom had many commonalities with Lorelei, and I saw myself in Rory. Squeegee Beckenheim and Tooky Clothespin are from an episode when Lorelei is trying to unsubscribe from a mountain of catalogs and mail from different businesses all sent to different fake names that she gave – most notably those two. I remember calling her and she cheerfully confirmed that it was from her. It was some free magazine deal that she had signed me up for on a whim. After smiling at the address labels the first few times I received them, I stopped thinking about or paying attention to them.
Yesterday though, as we were getting back from the library, I looked at the address label. It is amazing how easily a random piece of junk mail can bring up so many emotions. I was already missing my mom so strongly in that moment. Books were a strongly treasured part of my childhood – my mom made sure of it, and I remember her telling me years ago how much Fiona was going to love books and that I needed to make sure she had room for lots of bookshelves in her room. My mom loved seeing kids in love with books.
Yesterday Fiona was happier than I have seen her in a while. She was enjoying her new discovery that homeschooling means more time that can be spent at the library and she spent the day eagerly reading armloads of books – not because she had to for school, but because she loves reading. Lately, she has been too worn out after school to feel like reading. And getting her to read those levelled readers assigned by schools was like pulling teeth – they were easy reads for her, but she didn’t want to have to. As Fiona excitedly went on and on about all her books yesterday, I so desperately wanted to share that moment with my mom. She would have been so thrilled to see that light back in Fiona, especially since it came from books.
So, when I grabbed that mail and saw the label, it felt like a warm hug from my mom right when I was missing her most that day. I was immediately reminded of so many warm and loving memories of my mom – thanks to a simple piece of mail. Then, I cried because she is gone. Bittersweet has become the daily feeling around here since losing my mom, I miss her every day.