Monday, June 15, 2009

In Memoriam: Theresa van Heerden.

We received news this morning that Rowan's Ouma, my Mother, had had a particularly difficult night and that she was indeed in a very serious condition and being cared for at the Johannesburg Hospice.

As a tribute to my Mom I thought it a good idea to take Rowan out to one of the most tranquil and beautiful spots here in our area. It is a wonderful place to clear the mind, relax and spend quality time together . Rowan loves it. I love it.

We had a great time watching the water rush by underneath the bridge. We threw some stones in the water and took a nice long walk. The sun was warm. The sky was blue. All the while I was thinking about my Mom and also my Sister, Yolande, far away across the ocean. In some ways I was wishing that I could be there with them but I also knew that where I was at that moment in time was exactly where I was meant to be. Halfway between the bridge and a staircase that reaches for the sky, a beautiful white butterfly came fluttering alongside us and caught our attention. Rowan chased after it to get a closer look. I chose to take a deep breath and take in the moment with a contented smile on my face. My Mother suddenly came to mind again. A few seconds later the cell phone rang. I ran out of airtime and couldn't answer the call. When we got home there were several messages on the phone and soon after I found out that my Mom had passed away peacefully about an hour before.

This event and those of the past month have lead me to believe that this world, this creation, is a lot more magical and beautiful than we care to acknowledge. Does it matter that I believe that my Mom sent that little butterfly to greet us on our journey along the river? Does it matter whether I am right or wrong? No! For as long as we choose to believe in the magical and the miraculous, life will simply be so.

This post is dedicated to a beautiful woman that brought light and laughter to all that got to know her. She was a loving mother, caring sister, concerned daughter and a loyal friend. She inspired us to keep going when times were hard - to look up, smile and keep moving forward. She was loved by many and she loved many. Her strength, courage, love and compassion will always inspire me to be the best I can be. We will always love her and never forget her. Ouma, we will miss you dearly. Rest in peace, Mom.

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  1. What a beautiful tribute to your mom, Elaine. We love you and you are the great daughter and friend your mom raised and formed. :-) Anke

  2. Thank you, Anke. I love you too. Thanks for being such a great friend.

  3. What a stunning tribute to an amazingly beautiful woman... I can feel her energy in the pictures, and I once felt her love and compassion through her daughter, You my dear friend! Hers is the kind of energy that will live on in the hearts of all that she managed to touch, directly and indirectly... and I, too,believe strongly that the world was shining beautifully at a time when her soul transcended physical dimension: every moment of beauty in the sky and on earth, and in your messenger, the white butterfly, held that precious message for you, her goodbyes in a way that wouldnt break your heart, but leave you in awe! What a fitting way to take your leave, wouldnt you say?

    I wish you love and strength and the kind of beauty and joy in life that I am sure, she has already planted inside your heart! To you and Rowan, Much love