August 1st

I was five years old and had just visited my mother at the City of Hope Hospital where she was an inpatient with Hodgkins Lymphoma. Her diary says she could hear my little feet scampering down the hallway to her room and joyful giggles as I ran in and hopped onto her bed. I had no idea it would be her last day. Just a few weeks prior we celebrated my 5th birthday and she was in remission. She went all out for birthday with ponies and a clown. Perhaps she knew inside it may be the last birthday she had with me. All of our family was there and that day is one of my only early childhood memories. On August 1st, I visited her with my Nana and we had a wonderful visit as usual. My mother was expected to come home a day our two later. Shortly after Nana and I left a blood clot unexpectedly took my mother’s life after 4 long years of cancer. Her oncologist, who she loved dearly, was there as she took her last breaths. I’ve been told she had two wishes when she was diagnosed. One was to see me turn five and the other was to not have to live through the last few months of cancer. Her blood clot turned out to be a blessing as Dr. Forman informed us after she passed that she only had about three months to live. August 1st spared her enduring the end and she got to see me turn five.


So many emotions have lived with me my entire life. Incredible loss, the feelings of not knowing who I am, the search for myself, the fear of death and mostly just sorrow for never having had a mother-daughter bond with my biological mother. I’m a motherless daughter in every sense and told myself for most of my life that I would never have my own daughter. I wasn't worthy of that kind of love because I didn't know what it was. How could I begin to be something I didn’t know anything about? I waited well into my adulthood, and after many years of inner child work, to decide to welcome a daughter into my life. Today I’m thankful for the life my mother gave me and for her showing me the way to loving Seraphina. My time with her was so, so short, yet her loss enabled me to cherish my life so much more than I otherwise would. I reach for every star and dream up the biggest dreams only because I am aware of how fleeting life can be. My deepest hope is that Seraphina and I can do all the things I never got to experience with my mother. For a long time I lived in fear of the unknown, but having Seraphina gives me a purpose for today and a bright outlook on the beautiful future we can have, together.

David Austin Garden Roses

The world's most loved and cherished garden roses for English breeder, David Austin.

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