I expected to have so much more time with you. I wish I would have known –known that you wanted me. To learn this from my step dad after you're gone is a courageous gift he gave me, but it's also heartbreaking to know that now. I wish that I hadn't had such a guard up around my heart where you were concerned. I loved you more than you knew, more than I knew how to show you. I do cherish every memory we ever shared. I loved our days at the casino. I loved you actually went drinking with me at the Logger bar one year – even though you don't drink. I remember so well you singing that song by Bobby Bare, Running Bear Loves Little White Dove, and drumming your hands on the steering wheel like a teen age girl. That song will always remind me of you and my step dad Chuck. And mostly, I'll never forget the day we first spoke to each other. I was so scared, so very scared. I carried your phone number around in my pocket for two days. When I finally got the courage to call, I said, my name is Cherri Lee and when I was born and asked if that meant anything to you. You asked me to say it again, and I did and asked if you knew who I was. You said, “Yes, yes I know who you are and I know who I am. I am your mother.” Then you yelled to the whole family (little did I know how big the family was) that Cherri Lee was on the phone. Thank you mom, for my life, for my remarkable heritage, and the memories we did make. I hope we meet again mom and do it better next time.