My mom's last day at her job - a job she's held for nearly 19 years - was yesterday. (She begins her new job in a couple of weeks.) Last week, her co-workers had a goodbye celebration for her, and my brothers and I were there to witness it.
Some of the gang at the going-away party.
After the socializing, people gathered in a circle and select folk came up one by one to talk about how great my mom is, and what wonderful and amazing things she's done for the arts and local artists over the years. One person came up and said, "You know, I honestly don't think we'll miss you as much as I originally thought we would, because you've created a legacy that will last forever." That nearly made her tear up.
Mom being the social butterfly she is.
It was pretty incredible, I'm glad I made the trip down to Salem to be there. I was 15 when she first started working there, and though it was an hour or so away from home I remember going in a zillion times over the years. I'm sure I typed more than a few high school and college papers on the computer at her desk. I took my driving test not far from her office because there were no appointments left at the DMV in my hometown. I've met all of her co-workers over the years, and yet every time I would walk in the door she would do that motherly thing and parade me around the office, proudly showing me off as if I were still her newborn baby girl. She'll be amazing in her new job, and they don't know yet quite how lucky they'll be to have her. I'll have to tell them one of the times she's introducing me to all her new colleagues.
Mom finally taking the stage to say a few words.
Well done, Mom.
Cherry blossoms in Lake Oswego in early April.