Yesterday was my mother’s funeral. I won’t lie, it was one of the hardest days of my life, right next to the night I said goodbye to my father for the last time. The night before both funerals I was searching for eulogies and I promised myself that I would share mine for a couple of reasons. First, so that those who have chosen to follow my little space here would get to know my mother a little bit, and secondly for those that might need inspiration for their own eulogy. It is a hard thing to write so if this helps you at all then I am happy to share.
Good morning, my name is Nicole and I am one of Suzanne’s daughters. On behalf of all three of us I would like to thank everyone here that have gathered to celebrate the life of my Mom, Suzanne Auger.
It has been a difficult time for everyone as we watched Cancer snatch away a beautiful woman who was so filled with life, laughter and love. What made it easier for our mom was the outpouring of love and support that those of you here have shown both to her and my family these last few months. My sisters and I want to thank everyone who visited our mom or answered her late night calls to help ease her pain and worries. It warmed our hearts to hear how her friends and family had stopped in to say hello and to remind her she was in their thoughts. With all three of us being out of town your time and effort made the distance easier for us to bear. I would love to thank each of you personally but judging by the number of people here today that would take a while.
I do want to say a special thank you for the love and support from my mother’s sisters and their families. They have been a constant source of strength for my mother, my sisters and I. They made sure that my grandmother had the opportunity to spend time with Mom, adopted my mom’s furry baby Rouge, and so much more. So, thank you to everyone on behalf of my sisters and I for loving my mother the way she deserved to be loved.
You know, I realized that I did not fully appreciate the fullness of my mother’s life or the impact she made on those who loved her until yesterday. The stories shared by her friends from the school board, levels and friday night group had me smiling and remembering a woman that was so clearly adored. She held all of her friends dear and it was wonderful to see that she touched those around her with her kindness, love and laughter.
And that laugh, man she had a great laugh. It was loud, open, full of joy and contagious. Every single person that I spoke with yesterday mentioned my mom’s laugh and how just hearing it would make him or her smile. That laugh was the soundtrack to our childhood and a staple at our family gatherings.
Family was everything to mom. Each birthday had to be celebrated, with a full birthday song sung on the day of your birthday, coming together on Christmas eve was a ritual that could never be broken, and family gatherings were my Mom’s favourite thing in the world. She really was one of the strongest ties that bound us together, making sure we didn’t drift too far from one another. She made us promise that we would not let these ties break and it is a promise we intend to keep.
It is especially important now so that we can pass on these traditions and memories to her grand daughter Sophia. Every person in this room knows how much my mother adored her first grand child. I am pretty sure that if she didn’t have to work that Tonya and Brady would never have been able to get her to leave their house. The upside of course would have been that they would not have had a single dangling thread within a mile radius and their clothes would have been folded and colour coded.
While my mother definitely enjoyed cutting rogue threads, what she was truly passionate about was dancing, music and cards. She absolutely loved to dance, which is how she met my father. They were at a dance in St Catherine’s, he noticed her legs in a short miniskirt, and they danced all night. My mom always said she heard bells when she saw him and that it was love at first sight. Sure, my mom’s family was concerned when a guy, named William Williams, showed up in a Cadillac from New York State to take my mom out on a date. But it didn’t take long for him to charm them and soon my parents were married. Even though their marriage did not last, their connection never died. They were the love of each other’s lives and now they have the chance to dance together again, without pain or sorrow.
Mom’s outgoing personality and kind compassionate heart will be missed. She would do anything to bring joy and happiness to someone’s day. My mom did not always have an easy life yet she always approached hers with a positive attitude and vibrancy that was wonderful to behold.
She worked hard on becoming the best possible person and was a gentle soul who had many wonderful gifts. Being a great listener, Mom was intuitive. She knew when something was wrong and would give people what they needed to feel better. This usually included a hug, or perhaps several, and at least one kiss on the cheek.
The woman I will remember when I think of Mom is someone who taught me that there is strength in knowing when to bend. You need to take responsibility for your actions and be present to enjoy the adventures of the day. She taught me that all the little things one does in their life creates a mosaic that is as beautiful as you are willing to make it. The mosaic of my mother’s life was a rainbow of family, friends, light, laughter and love.
So, when something reminds you of Mom, share it with each other. Share your memories and keep her memory alive, not just in the next days that come, but in the weeks and months that follow, especially the birthdays and holidays. At those times my mom’s absence will be felt with a fresh sense of loss. And maybe, when you are feeling that sorrow, pop in Sister Act or Rick Astley. Smile as you think about Mom dancing and singing. If you are up to it maybe dance with her, I am sure my dad won’t mind if you cut in.