This is the first Mother’s Day since my mom passed away last fall. I’ve thought of her every day, sometimes in the most unexpected moments. But especially with this holiday, she’s been on my mind even more.
I felt this most keenly on a recent trip to Salt Point State Park, on the northern California coast. B. and I wandered through the fascinating mix of redwood, conifer, and tanoak forests; and a pygmy forest where the hardpan iron-rich soil stunts the growth of everything in it – here we witness the complete depletion of nutrients, at the very end of a soil’s life cycle. Looking up at the night sky, Cassiopoeia leading a trail across my line of sight, I envision my mother’s tears, in wonder at such beauty. Walking the cliffs jutting out into the ocean, and rock formations of tafoni sandstone, created when salt and water erode the stone, I still am incredulous that she’s no longer in this world with me. A carpet of wildflowers – incredible in such a windy, inhospitable climate – scents the air and mingles with the briny smell of the sea. As a dear friend most astutely said, now my mother truly is everywhere.