On Birthdays

On May 11, 1946 my momma was born in an old Iowa farmhouse and I swear, the moon must’ve been shining bright and all the flowers must’ve been singing upon her arrival to this lovely planet.

Today, I imagine what it must’ve been like that day, in the country, in a two story house that sat back near some trees, at the end of a long winding lane.

I bet there was such joy when a new baby came. A celebration. Ooooing and ahhhing over tiny fingers and rosy cheeks. Life changes with a baby.

Life also changes without one. My momma wasn’t a baby when she passed, she was 75, but she was still somebody’s baby. Someone’s dream come true, back in 1946.

And, she was ours. Our life and our dream. She was a momma, wife, friend, cousin, niece, sister, aunt, and grandmother. My, oh my, how we miss her.

Birthdays were always a big thing for my momma. When ours rolled around, she decorated, did the cakes, and made our day so special. How amazing, really, those yearly reminders of how the moment we were born was still worth celebrating.

Birthdays meant something to my momma. And, because of her, they mean something to me. I tend to go ‘all out’, too. Streamers and banners, a cake and gifts, and confetti to top it all off.

It’s funny, the shift that takes place after someone passes and their birth-day comes. It’s such a contradiction. Here we are, on this date that used to be so laughter, cake, and gift filled, to another reminder that she’s gone.

Birthdays are different after loss…

Today is the 2nd birthday of hers since she passed. Last year was a tear filled mess. She was about to turn 76, but didn’t make it, so that birthday was sooooooo hard.

If you follow my blog, you may have noticed I haven’t written anything for a long time. I quit writing again. I let a comment get to me- it was one of trying to push me through my journey of momma loss.

It broke me in a way that squished all desire to write. Before it, I had been honest about how momma loss feels.

After it?

I pulled the shades up around my writing and I stopped, again. It wasn’t the first time a comment caused me to throw in the writing towel.

But, you know what?

My momma loved this blog and she especially loved when I started writing again after having a big case of writer’s block. So today, I’m writing for her.

Happy Heavenly Birthday to my momma! ❤️❤️❤️

If there is such a thing as reuniting with family and loved ones on the Heavenly side, I hope they’re having a big ol’ party for her. She would surely love it!

Thanks for reading,


©️ copyright 2023 Unmeasured Journeys

©️ copyright photo taken by me, Jessica Adam

28 thoughts on “On Birthdays

  1. I’m so sorry someone wrote a hurtful comment on your blog! Those are hard to get over and have a way of crushing honest creativity. You have every right to be sad about your mother’s passing, especially on her birthday. I’m glad you’re moving forward with your blog, knowing how much your mom enjoyed it. You know she’s still proud of you!!!!


  2. It’s nice to hear from you Jessica, and I’m sorry that not everyone understands that grief is so personal, we all go at our own pace and deal with it individually. Stay strong and true to yourself and keep your mommas memory alive! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey sweet one- what I’m beginning to see/understand is that some maybe just won’t ever get m-y particular experience. And, wow, how freeing that is, because I’m figuring out that I can just live my journey whether it resonates with other timelines or not. Thank you for what you said. ❤️ I sure had zero clue that momma loss would make me stronger. I’m definitely learning some clear boundaries. Gift in that!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Don’t ever let any comments pull you down. You’re a wonderful writer and you need to be heard. I’m sure your Mom would tell you the same. Beautifully-written tribute and I know your Mom is smiling 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Terry, love that. I bet you’re right. She probably would have said the same thing. Thank you for that. I’m working on the part about not getting pulled down by comments. Such a work in progress. ❤️ I’m glad I decided to write today. Comments like yours remind me of all the wonderful people in the world. I love that you said she’s smiling. She had a great smile. ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Jessica, one of the best ways to honor those we love and have lost, is to have the best part of them live on in you. You are doing that in so many ways. Like celebrating birthdays in a big way. And continuing this blog which she loved. I think your momma is smiling now and saying, “Nice post, Jessica!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • My cup runneth over, Betty. I don’t think you could’ve said anything more perfect. Touches my heart. Bless you. And, I think you’re right. I think she would’ve liked this one. Stepping over ‘I can’t’ to ‘I can.’ You honor me with your words that she’s living on through me. What a wonderful thing to say/ outlook. Love that so very much. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hello, darling girl. Thank you so much. You’re so great about giving me confidence boosts in the writing thing. I appreciate that with my whole heart. Your comment makes me want to keep writing and that is something I haven’t felt in a long time. Bless you! ❤️


      • I have often thought of doing a blog for the very same reason. I enjoy reading yours and it comforts me in knowing that im not alone and it completely validates my feelings. So please keep writing!💕

        Liked by 2 people

        • You’re a sweetheart. Thank you. I’m going to try again. It helps me to know that my words/ experiences/ thoughts validate your feelings. That is so huge. That’s why I’ve talked about all of this stuff for the past year, just in case someone was in similar shoes. I’m honored that it was you- my neighbor from little kid hood. Playhouse and tea parties with mud. Haha. Whew, parent loss is a doozy. I love that we’re learning from each other through this. If you do start a blog, please let me know. I’d love to read it!


  5. You’re right Jessica, birthdays are ‘different’ after the death of a loved one. You know what, my father’s birthday is in 4 days’ time (15 May) … he passed away 9 years ago, but we still remember him on every birthday with a laugh and a tear. It’s a beautiful tribute you wrote about your mother’s birth – really touching 💌.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hey girl!! Hope you’re doing well. Thank you, I love thinking about what it must’ve been like when she was born. I wish I would’ve asked my gramma about it. At the time my grandparents would have had a 4 year old, 2 year old, and a newborn. My momma always told stories of her uncles carrying her through snow drifts to get down that same driveway. There’s not one speck of the farmhouse, barns, flowerbeds, or anything there now. It all got bulldozed in and turned into a cornfield.

      I’ll be thinking of you on the 15th. Big giant hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

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