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The Way We Were: Blessings of a Matriarch

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Today, we celebrate the life of a great Matriarch.  My mother.  It doesn’t surprise me that she died on 12/12/12, that we put her obituary in the Sunday paper on Mother’s Day, or that we celebrate her life and have a memorial for her during Memorial Day weekend.

Janet Lynn Larsen Greene

Janet Lynn Larsen Greene

Fifty family members are gathered at one of her favorite places in the world, Fairmont Hot Springs, Montana.  Probably seventy-five will attend her memorial today.  It is a great reunion and something she always wanted during her life.  A BIG family gathering on the outskirts of Butte, Montana.  My brother Brett made a DVD with music that includes pictures of family from the early 1900’s to now.  Jalynn and Michael will sing, “For Good” from the “Wicked” soundtrack.  We will lift off pastel colored balloons toward heaven for her.  She  was our center.  Our glue.  Things will change now, Dad is moving to Utah on the fifteen of June.  Mark and Dustin to Portland.  Loss.  Yet, new beginnings. Barbra and Redford Today, I think of my Mother’s favorite movie “The Way We Were” starring Robert Redford and Barbara Streisand. Mom particularly loved the music in the movie, and both actors, and how many times she watched that movie accounts for her love of it.  Mom and I watched it together at LEAST forty times, if not more.  She loved so many scenes in that movie, but I recall today the part she enjoyed the most.  The scene when Hubbell is on the sail boat with his friend JJ and they are reminiscing.  JJ asks Hubbell, “Best Year!”  Hubbell looks wistfully, ” ’45,” then there is a small pause, ” ’46, ’47.”  Mom always turned to me with tears in her eyes, lips quivering, sighed and said, “The years he was with her.”    Today, we are remembering the years with her, Janet, our Matriarch, the best years, and the way we were.


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Category: Indie It Blog

About the Author: Leisa Greene’s passions include writing about music, theater, film, food, art, family and friends -- all of which are supported by the community of Missoula and an IV line of dark-roasted iced coffee. She is the English Department’s Administrative Associate of Graduate Admissions at her alma mater, University of Montana; the editor-in-chief of Indie It Press; and the author of a memoir manuscript currently titled EARLY OUT. Her other writing consists of short essays (Brother Townsend and A Jamboree Family), playwriting (The Beckett Syndrome) and screenwriting. “The only regret you will ever have is if you never write it. So, go write it Mom. “ – Dustin Nelson, my son

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