Monday's Musings: Snowy Memories of Mom

by Mary Denman   @MaryDenman

My gorgeous, loving mom
As many of you know, I lost my beloved mother in May of 2013. 

January of 2014 was my first birthday without her. I had no clue how difficult it would be. 

You see, back in January of 2013, I spent my actual birthday with mom in her hospital room. We joked about being together in a hospital 48 years prior. For my delivery. In a blizzard. In a blackout. Because the hospital was on auxiliary power, the elevator wasn't working . . . . My poor mom had to climb 5 flights of stairs. In full labor. With her fifth child. ME! 

I jokingly apologized for being such trouble. 

She apologized I had to spend my birthday in a hospital room with her. I told her there was no other place I'd rather be. And I meant it . . . . 

We lost her 3 months later. 

So in January of 2014, I was happy to get a birthday call from my dad, but we both missed mom not being on the line. With her and daddy singing off-key. Then dissolving into laughter. 

Belfort, France by Mary Denman
She brought me into this world. I missed her not being in my world. 

I still do. 

Fast forward to my birthday this year. The process of grief has been challenging. It hits at odd times. I wasn't sure how my birthday would be. 

But God saw fit to make it special. 

He sent me to another continent. I was in the medieval town of Belfort, France. Walking around the old city. In a snow storm. Alone. And I loved it. 

My husband was at work that day in Belfort, meeting with French co-workers and I was enjoying the town. I bought a chapeaux (hat) with the help from some delightful local ladies and the male shop owner who spoke little English. They were hesitant at first to offer their true opinion until I convinced them in my broken French that I really wanted it. I felt like a part of the town! We successfully picked me out a chocolate colored hat that "framed my visage" (face), said one of the ladies.

Belfort, France by Mary Denman Photography
Then, I took off to hike up to the fort overlooking the town. That's when the snow started. I was so happy. The heavier it fell, the happier I was. 

Mom and dad always loved watching the snow fall with us when we were growing up. We'd turn on the outside lights, turn off the inside lights and just watch it with the fireplace blazing. For hours. 

So as I walked around the fort for a couple of hours with more and more snow coming down, I thought about how much mom would have loved to hear about my day. To see my photos after the trip. To ask me questions about it. 

And that's when it happened. 

My day alone became very special. 

As dusk fell along with the snow, I felt like a little girl, with my mom there with me, marveling at the fort. At the huge, soft flakes covering the land. Hearing the squeak that only snow beneath your feet can make. Reminding us both of years growing up. Hers with her beloved German grandfather, his shoes squeaking on the Christmas Eve sidewalk. Mine with my parents and five siblings, watching snow dance all the way to the ground. 

I wasn't really alone. God wanted me to have a special day, feeling close to my mom. It was just what I needed. 

And I'm so very, very grateful that He planned that day for me. 


When has God given you an unexpected gift or seen fit to plan a special time for you? 

TWEETABLE: Snowy Memories of Mom (CLICK TO TWEET)

clairejustineparty  The Chicken Chick


  1. Oh Mary, this is a beautiful account. I am sorry for your loss but I am so pleased that God blessed you on your birthday with this feeling of closeness to your dear Mother. Thank you for sharing. I am visiting from Creative Mondays and I am very pleased to have met you.x

    1. Hi Kezzie! Thanks so much for dropping by. Don't you love Claire's blog?

      It was a special birthday.

      I love your Doctor Who inspired outfit!

      Thanks again for dropping by!

  2. It sounds like you were very close to your mum. How lovely that a snowy birthday triggered happy memories of her and you were able to feel close to her.

    1. We were very close Anna, and that's why I miss her so much. Thanks for stopping by. :)

  3. Aww Mary , such a moving post.. :( I am so close to my mum and I feel so sad with her pain and with her arthritis.
    Glad to hear you had a special day with God, the snow and presious memories xx

  4. Beautifully written Mary. I can picture you in your chapeau dans la neige! You deserved that special day!
    Hugs Wren x