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Making lemonade

August 16, 2011 - Linda Lobeck
Trying to stay optimistic in times when everyone seems to be down is not an easy task. But as the two year mark came today since my mother had died, I remember how she lived her life and tried to stay upbeat no matter what happened.

Don’t get me wrong, like most of us she shed her share of tears in those first moments of loss but then moved on. As my younger sister and her major caregiver said at her funeral, “When God gave her lemons, she made lemonade.” Some of her lemons included losing her husband at age 44 and setting an example for us by getting back into the workforce after being at home for 25 years. Ironically, my mom and I were job hunting at the same time, because that was the same time that I graduated from college. I’m sure it wasn’t an easy thing for her, but she made the best of it and was a favorite teller at the bank until she retired.

She was good at helping us out as well as she could during the years that followed my dad’s death. And when she became a grandmother, she was always there for her grandsons making sure they knew she supported them in anything they did. She proudly wore the Iron Mountain Mountaineers and Negaunee Miners shirts when the grandsons were involved in athletics.

Health problems started appearing 5-6 years before she died and she did a good job in hiding it. She just kept moving forward with her life and living it. But when it became evident she needed to be closer to family, she adapted to living in Negaunee making friends in her apartment building and through a lunch group with my sister. It wasn’t easy picking up and moving from the only place she had ever lived, but she made lemonade again.

When she was finally diagnosed four years before she died with a debilitating neurological condition, she tackled each obstacle as best she could trying to keep her humor. But losing your independence, not being able to drive, not being able to walk, and finally not being able to talk — life certainly wasn’t easy for her.

If there is anything that I have taken from my mom’s life is that you can’t wallow in pity when things go wrong in your life. You move forward and live your life all while making lemonade.


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