Death into New Life!

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mom and nana 1950 in vermontWhen my mom, and best friend (Rachel) passed away in 2005, I was left dead with her. In the depth of pain, I never felt or saw anything good in her passing. I took comfort she was happier in heaven, than suffering the slow death of cancer eating away at her, but in the all about me show – I was left here alone, empty, without her.

Going through”stuff”

Going through cleaning all her millions of things from 50 years of marriage to my dad (who passed away the following year in 2006), I cried at the thought all these “things” had a memory for my mom in them. They each told a unique story. My dad, in his anger and fury wanted to throw the entire attic away in dumpsite. That wasn’t working for me, as you might imagine.

Overcoming The Death Of A Parent

Alone in my tears of grief, surrounded by all my mom’s treasures, I received an inspiration that her things could live on in others by creating a little shop with the name, “A Little Bit of Rachel – The Unique Boutique.” -you can visit the online shop here: Vintage Online Clothing Store.

rachel logo

Well, when I ran downstairs to share with my dad my new found epiphany, he naturally told me point blank I was nuts. In fact, he resentfully retaliated with, ” A little bit of Rachel – after what I’ve seen she stashed up in that attic, I would say it is more like a whole #@!* lot of Rachel.”

What happened next?

I found a small place for a little shop off the beaten path in town, friends painted it, helped bring all of mom’s things into it, and created a sign with my mother’s signature laserd into it. Just like she had newly created the store herself.

Transforming Grief Into New Life

People came by just to see the place. Prices were cheap, it wasn’t about the money, it was about keeping the happy memory of mom alive in others, through her clothes, and many vintage gems. Customers would buy coats, come back weeks later, and tell me, “I took Rachel to New York city with me last week – we had a blast!” I have books filled with comments like that. Rachel went to Lebanon, Sweden, England – more places than when she was here. And everyone had a story to tell about the beautiful woman, who lived life to the fullest, when they received a compliment on their purchase.

Inspired by death?

Many I met were just inspired that a mother/daughter relationship could be so close, that this “A Little Bit of Rachel,” even existed. Some Mothers got hope of a better relationship with their daughter, when they walked through those doors. That was priceless. I’d like to think the death of my mom, was transformed into a new life of something even better, greater, larger than her life itself.

In closing, as I sifted through her many collectibles, I found this poem she wrote to her mother, after she passed away. My Nana (Yvonne), her mother, died in my arms in 1995. This was the poem; .

The true love of a mother is indispensable.
Like a rose in bloom,
Like the smell of spring,
Like the whiteness of snow.
The true love a mother is indispensable.
Like a new baby,
Like the very first step..

By Rachel Scott

Don’t wait!

Don’t wait to say, “I love you.” Don’t wait to appreciate the people God has placed in your life. Don’t wait!

And… keep hope, that anything can be transformed into something good. Even death, into a new type of life.

Photos of mom, and more about the story, are at our: Fashion Blog



as featured on ezine with ezine link

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  • Paula

    Hey Deb,

    Reading this it has brought tears to my eyes and back memories of my parents passing 1year apart from each other back in 2006, I know those feelings and yes everytime I visit my brother’s as he holds on to those treasures and everytime I walk into the door it brings back so many beautiful moments…. I am very thankful to the lord giving me such wonderful parents .. a beautiful mother who was strong, who not only loved us but the whole world unconditionally. How she managed to raise 5 kids with barely earning mininum wage and a father who was a womanizer and yet she always found the time , opened her heart and door to every poor person. She has taught me so much as being the youngest of five I had the advantage point, because I was able to absorb all this beauty she expelled. Its those gifts that the Lord gives each day. I am so looking forward to reading your book.. Thank you for sharing and mostly Deb “thank you” for you, for your existence and sharing. Life is so beautiful isnt it?

    Paula Konkus

  • Linda Ricard

    Hi Deb,

    Here I am crying with what I have just read. I so agree with you and how one’s Mom is everything in life and once they have left us, you than are left with the things around you that remind you of them and the times you had together. They are so special, and what they teach us in life goes on forever to share with everyone. My Mom (your godmother, Laurette) was so special in my eyes and there isn’t a day that passes by that I don’t think of her and my Dad (Babe, your godfather). Both so special and I love them so. I laugh so much with Sue and Moe on our yearly sleepover, the moments we experienced with them. My Mom and Dad were very religious people, but my Mom had one thing that my Dad did not have or understood and that was her spirituality, and that I thank her for sharing with me. I love your positiveness in finding the good with both of their passing, and that you can share that with everyone. May God Bless you with everything that can make you happy this holiday season. Thanks for sharing, Love Linda. P.S… I think of your Mom and Dad so much… almost as if they’re around me, which I believe they are.