This morning, as I was doing my quiet meditation, I sensed my mother's presence, as well as the loss I feel in my life without her. My mother was a complex person. And she loved me. I felt anger sometimes towards her. And I respected her. She drove us all crazy sometimes. And we miss her. She hated the way she looked after she got sick. And she still had an inner beauty. She was funny and tolerated no bullshit. She disliked the nursing home she had to live in at the end of her life and she had more "boyfriends" there than any other resident. The average age of these "boyfriends" was forty. She would be sitting in the solarium and a few of the aides would come by and say, "Hey, Helen! How are you doing today? You look beautiful." And she would light up. She complained that her aide, Janis, and Janis' best friend, Wendy, laughed too much and were too happy. And she loved listening to their gossip. I miss her and wish we could have one more afternoon sitting together in the backyard.