In 1967, while I was a freshman in college, my mother died after
a recurrence of breast cancer just two years after having a radical
mastectomy. My rock, my stability, my security were suddenly gone.
Our relationship had been so close that I barely understood where she
left off and I began. I have only recently come to terms with the
loss and the feelings of emptiness that I suppressed for many years
after her death.
Looking through old photographs and reading poetry written by my
father, myself and others was particularly cathartic. To my surprise,
I felt a sense of joy rather than pain. Her presence was tremendously
comforting to me -- after all these years. This is the story of
a woman with beauty, strength and intelligence who, due to ignorance
and fear, lost her life. This is a celebration and tribute to her
life and our continued bond. She lives in me.