Bye Bye Mama

Hello my Sparkly Friends
I am very sad today.
I just found out my mom passed away yesterday.
Nobody told me
I found out this morning when Ashley called me from Austria
to see how I was.
When I asked her what she meant, she told me my mom had passed away yesterday.
I don't know what hurts more...
the loss ...
or the feeling of betrayal from my brother and sister.
Or telling the feelings "that I should have called more
and put away my feelings of abandonment (I was adopted)
and reached out more and told my fear of getting close because she would leave me again" to "Just Shut Up".

I guess the reason for me writing this is for those you out there- my sparkly friends- that might be holding back love because of fear.
Fear of rejection
Fear of More Loss
Fear of abandonment...
you get the picture.
Stop holding back because eventually
there wont be a
loving more won't be a possibility
that window will close.
Death gives us a great perspective on what kind of people we have been being up till now,
and a chance to start acting like the people we want to be.

My mom's name was Jan. She had me when she was 17 and my sister was already 14 months old.
My adoptive parents wanted to adopt my sister too, but my mom said no.
I lived my entire life with this "vision" of my "real mom".
Don't get me wrong,
I very much loved my adoptive parents- they were my parents, but I always had this longing to connect with the person who had given me my quirky personality and my blonde hair.
When I was 35, I was reunited with her- my mom Jan at last.
I found out where my artistic abilities came from, my "bucking authority", my stubbornness, my love of animals, the great outdoors, my long legs, blonde hair and blue eyes as well. I found out that when I was first born, she had to pretend that she was keeping me and so for 8 days in the hospital she had to feed me and hold me- all the while knowing that she had to give me up.
Um, I think today they call that BONDING- and I guess we bonded which is why I had always felt a missing piece of me was out there even though I had loving adoptive parents.
She told me "Sometimes I would hold you and tell you that Don't worry I will come back to get you"...
Those words pierced my memory... like a distant familiar echo- I somewhat remembered deep in my heart her saying that.
Then, 35 years later I found myself sitting in her living room in Florida, watching Maury Povich or some show like that- looking in the audience for her...
and she was doing the same thing!
We looked at each other and started laughing that we didn't have to look for each other in talk show audiences anymore!!
So far this story sounds like a great happy ending.
Here is where my stupid fear of abandonment came pounding up my walkway and barreled down my door.
You see, my mom had a big drinking problem and as happy as I was to finally meet her, I was also scared to get too close because I would lose her again.
That my sparkly friends is the mistake I am talking about.
I wasn't able to get myself to regularly keep in touch. I didn't act like a great caring daughter.
I probably hurt her a lot by not regularly calling.
My fear took over and sometimes months passed before I would call her.
It was a lot to process and

I took the easy way out-

I procrastinated.

I avoided...

Now I can't do that anymore because she is no longer available.

I guess the whole point about writing this post is so you don't make the same mistakes I just made.

Don't be selfish with your love and by that I mean don't hold it back cause you fear getting hurt- that's just plain selfish and I can only see that now that I have made my own bed.

Feeling like I do right now is a lot worse than any hurt from "perceived loss".

Christmas is just 2 days away now.

Hug your family.

Hug your neighbors.

Hug your enemies.

Keep in touch.

I just don't know how Jesus did it all the time...

I wish I could be just a tiny bit like Him.

I guess that means forgiving my brother and sister... quite literally.

Could you please pray for me to have my heart open to forgive?
Cause right now my ego is really mad at what they did.
I don't want it to win
I want love to win
but it is really hard to stay open
when I am so used to staying shut.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas my sparkly friends...
thank you for stopping by- it warms my heart to know you are out there.


  1. Hello, I am so sorry for your loss, my heart is breaking for you. You will be in my thoughts and prayers through this difficult time and through the Holiday's. Hugs, Terri

  2. Tobi,
    My heart is breaking for you. You will be in my thoughts and in my prayers.
    One thing I want you to think about is, what if you never met her, what if all those questions you had went unanswered? You were able to get your answers and to meet her. You were blessed in that way. You met your brother and sister.
    Don't look at the past but go forward and even though it is hard, forgive, extend a hand out toward your brother and sister. If they reject you, then in your heart, you will know that you made the offer and you will feel better and have no regrets.

    Hugs to you,

  3. Dear Tobi, I lost my father the week before Thanksgiving and I,too, had somewhat of a falling out with my sisters about it so I know a little of what you are going through. I truly am sorry for your loss. It will get better, I promise. Best wishes for a blessed holiday, hugs, Kathleen

  4. I am so, so sorry Tobi. Please try not to be too hard on yourself. It's so easy to look back and blame yourself, rather than accepting your feelings.

    You were scared and fearful, not selfish. Fear of abandonment is a huge, heart crushing concern. Had your mom been more stable herself, things may have been much different.

    Here are some things I've learned about forgiveness that may help you. I liked them so much I wrote them down!

    Forgiveness is the willingness to move past the offense and refuse to entertain further thoughts about it. It's NOT the same as telling the other person (or people in your case) what they did was ok. It was NOT ok; it was real; it was negative, and whatever their motives, it was damaging and wrong.

    Forgiving is not giving your retroactive approval or admitting that maybe you're being too sensitive or hard on them.

    Forgiving is releasing negative emotion, not condoning bad behavior.

    But, how can we let them off the hook?! How can we forgive them when they might not even be willing to admit they ever did anything that requires forgiveness? We want paybacks! We want divine retribution. We want justice!

    But justice and forgiveness have nothing to do with one another. We forgive to set our own spirits free, not condone the misguided actions of someone else.

    We forgive to free ourselves.

    Tobi, Carry your Mom in your HEART, not on your shoulders. She wouldn't want that.

    God Bless You,

  5. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'll be sending my love to you tonight. Big Hugs xoxox

  6. I just today discovered your blog-my prayer for you is that angels gather round you and give you comfort-so many of us spend Christmas without our mothers-here is the hand of LOVE from a stranger to you!

  7. Aw Tobi - I'm so sorry that you're feeling sad. We adopted our daughter so I understand some of your feelings. Whether it was for the best or not, there is always that piece of you missing if you don't know your birth mother. And accepting someone who you just envisioned in your head as a child and who isn't perfect isn't an easy thing to do. Dying is part of life and eventually we just have to accept that and try to deal with our losses as best we can. Please don't be mad at your siblings - it will only add to your pain. They have their own grief to deal with and probably in time also their guilt about not letting you know. You know you can talk to your mother anytime you want - just in your heart and head. I have conversations with my loved ones who have passed all the time - I truly believe they can hear. I'll keep you in my prayers and I hope God will ease your heart during the coming weeks. Big hugs!

  8. I am so, so sorry for your loss and for all of the feelings and emotions that you are left to work through. May God bless you and give you peace in the days and weeks ahead.

    Yes, you will be in my prayers.

  9. We're so sorry to read about your loss.
    God bless,

  10. Deareswt Tobi,
    I am so sorry that you have lost your mom. Don't beat yourself up! Of all the separations in the world, the one from your true mom is the hardest to overcome. Mine left me when I was six, and reappeared when I was 23. I completely let her slip away because I was afraid she would leave again anyway--which she did.
    At least you kept yourself open to her and your siblings...even if you felt you could have reached out more. Doors like this swing both ways.
    I'll be praying you find forgiveness soon. You are a talented, sparkling person who I feel I know through your beautiful art and willingness to share this beauty. God Bless you this Christmastime and always and I hope He sends a lot of comfort your way!

  11. Dear Tobi,
    I am sorry for the loss of your mother. I pray GOD will wrap his loving arms around you and give you peace and strength in the days ahead.
    Sending love and prayers to you sweetie. Vicky

  12. Wishing you some peace, Tobi! XOXO Tanya

  13. Dear Tobi,
    I have enjoyed coming to your blog to be with the pixies. I've always thought what an extraordinarily creative and beautiful person you must be to have created this blog.

    I am so sorry to hear of your loss of your birth mother. You have a long journey ahead of you as you work through the grief. Know that we are all walking with you with our arms hugging you as you go through each day. I am sorry your siblings were so hurtful. Forgive them. It will make you stronger.


  14. I just wanted you to know I dropped by and read your letter.My heart goes out to you.I'm so sorry you would have to go through such pain.I will be praying for you Tobi-most sparkly one.Nothing is too hard for HIM.

  15. i'm so sorry to hear about your loss and the difficult time you are having. i think Christmas time is a specially difficult time to experience loss. but you are on the right track to pray for the grace to forgive, not only your siblings but also yourself. sending you healing thoughts and prayers, and wishing you a peace beyond understanding that God can and does give.

  16. I know your pain but it sort of an opposite story. I had a daughter. A beautiful daughter. A model for Calvin Cline and Hillfiger. She left home at 18 and has abandoned me and disowned me as her mother. My exhusbands mistress is now called her mother. She has millions, I have very little. I raised her and sewed till my fingers bled to make money to buy her nice things. I have tried so hard to love her. I stopped buying her Birthday gifts and Christmas gifts because they aren't good enough. She has three sons and they call that woman grandma. It's just weird. That woman has always wanted my life. At 18 she tried to stop my wedding and never married but waited on my husband for 25 years. She got him then lost him to another woman. But she got him again and my daughter. She now has my daughter but not him. Holidays are sad here. With the death of my oldest son and my middle son it seems like a death when I think of her. I look at her face book and that is the only way I know anything about her. There is much to this story. Too much to comment on. Why I told you this is because we should love our parents no matter what because there is always a reason for things that happen. Depression. fear, self esteem. etc. I appreciate everything. I have a beautiful daughter here with me who loves me and has given me two beautiful grandkids. She takes care of me and she never hears from her sister. her children don't even know their cousins. It is just sad. I hope you understand that there was a reason for the things your mother did. I'm sure she loved you. In you she lives on. As you said you have so many similarities. I will pray for you. Blessings, Jan-Black Creek Primitives

  17. Tobi, I'm so sorry for the loss of your mother and the dual sadness from your siblings. My prayer for you is that the Holy Spirit will give you the peace and comfort you are searching for. Know the Lord has already forgiven us and it is his desire for us to forgive those who have wronged us. You will be in my prayers for you to receive strength to move past the pain. Just a side note: your blog has been so inspiring to me this Christmas, I have loved your creations and purchased through ebay several white pixies that I used to continue my white Christmas theme throughout my home. It sounds so superficial at a time like this but I just wanted you to know.

    In His Hands,
    Sandy L.

  18. My dear Tobi, I feel like our soul's connected a long time I feel for you because you are so sweet and loving, You have the right to be angry but not for long or it will haunt you.
    I lost my mother in law this last September and had left alot of thing's unsaid and undone....regret's my friend alot of them. Also my oldest daughter lost her children to the state of has taken me and my husband three month's to get the children with us.
    I know life can be so unfair...I hope you can find some healing in the new year. I will alway's be here for you.
    I love you my favorite pixie.
    Love, Debbie

  19. Hi Tobi, I wish I could send you a big hug. Your post really touched my heart strings. Try not to be so hard on yourself. A mother's love is such a gift in itself and it sounds like you had that big time! In time you will be able to look back and smile at everything and remember the good times and maybe even chuckle a little. My mom has been gone for about 3 years now and I am doing just that.
    Have a wonderful new year knowing that you touched the lives of so many with your post and keep up your mom's legacy of love and creative artistic expression and you will do fine. When you are feeling down just lean on God and He will embrace you with His love and healing. Hugs..julie

  20. Hi Tobi, My heart and prayers go out to you during the lost of your mother here at Christmas time. When I lost my parents both were in the month of December. My mother the 18th and my father on Christmas Day. God gives us the strength to carry on regardless of the situation. Things will get better in time although it may not seem like that right now. I will keep you in my prayers. Happy New Year. A Missouri Friend

  21. I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine how heartbreaking that is! Remember that you have this beautiful blog here to help you keep seeing the beauty in life and things around you, and that you have so many readers (including me!) who find so much inspiration from it. Again, so sorry for your loss, and I hope you will find more happiness in this new year :) Hugs from your new fan in Paris!


    Paris in Pink

  22. Tobi....I just read this post, and you are in my prayers. I am so sorry for your loss, you have so many people who love you, xxoo Valarie

  23. I'm crying as I write this. So sorry for what you have lost and the hurt that has come with it. I am also adopted but have searched for years with no luck. Even with the best adopted family I could dream of, I always felt something missing, a withdrawing from everyone, a wish to apologize to my birth mom for all the problems she must have faced because of me. All the best.

  24. Oh Tobi, I am so, so sorry for your loss. I took some time off from blogging during the Holidays and I'm just now reading your post. Please don't be so hard on yourself, take time to grieve and time will help you see through the pain. Hugs, Nan

  25. I am so sorry to hear about your loss.
    I was just keeping up with blogs and realize I haven't see you written. Now I know why.
    Hang in there the best you can.