It was sudden. A load of clothes still in the dryer. A letter in her typewriter still waiting to be finished. And a dentist appointment on the calendar at the exact time hundreds of people ultimately gathered for her funeral.
My mother died 12 years ago, when I was 23, and I still miss her, every day. But this lesson of independence, more than any other, has given me the direction I needed to navigate my adulthood without her.