I’ve wanted to write about this for almost 3 months now.
But I didn’t know what to say. And I still do not.
It’s hard to believe that much time has already passed…
and, yet, in some ways it seems the time span has been even greater.
It was during “Our Time of Joy” – The Feast of Tabernacles –
that our time of great sorrow came.
Mama – my dear, precious, beautiful mama – left this life on October 16th, 2014.
And though she had struggled for over 35 years with her health…
her passing was sudden.
Grief is a strange thing.
There is no time limit… and it is different for everyone.
It is bitter. And it is sweet.
It can be filled with laughter… and filled with tears.
We grieve the loss of the past, the present, and the future…
and, yet, we rejoice in the same.
Things we see, hear, smell, taste, and feel can so easily bring
a flood of conflicting thoughts and emotions.
Like when I was going through her room…
Her medication bottles in so many drawers and cabinets…
a painful reminder she is no longer here to take them –
yet rejoicing that she no longer needs them and is not suffering.
The salve I made her to help her with her Restless Leg Syndrome and Neuropathy – the smell invoked visions of all the nights I would rub it on her feet, legs, and back… and now her legs are no longer restless and her body no longer in pain… and no more struggle to sleep and rest.
My business card in her drawer… reminds me how she believed in me and always encouraged and listened to my hopes and dreams.
A drawer with loose Cornuts and Gobstoppers that had fallen out of their packaging… how awful I thought they smelled but how she loved them and would light up when someone gifted her with them.
Photos of our children when they were babies – and how she was there for all of their births. And what a proud and happy grandma she was.
… Because of her, I was brave enough to be a mother…
Because of her, I wanted to be one. Because of her, I love being one.
Many knew of Mama’s dimpled smile and quirky interests and style.
Many knew her for her kindness and saw so much of her loving character
but there was so much more that went deeper… that many didn’t see.
She was compassionate and she loved deeply and always thought of others.
Even when her health hindered her from doing so much
that she wanted to do for others, her heart was continually burdened for them,
and her thoughts and prayers were filled with others.
And it was especially evident in her roles as wife, mother, and daughter.
Through Mama’s living example, and not just through her words,
I learned that life wasn’t/isn’t about me.
I learned that the most beautiful and full life is one of love – selfless love -,
of forgiveness, smiles, tears, thankfulness, perseverance, laughter,
and blessing others through service.
Mama knew and lived that Love is not pursuing our own plans and interests –
but that it is the giving of self to bless another.
She had a heart that was willing and ready to ‘wash the feet of others’
She did not seek the praise of people, nor did she seek glory.
She didn’t even know how beautiful she was –
For her, certain kindnesses and acts of selfless love were what was normal.
Because of her, I love being a wife, I cherish being a mother,
I strive to be a daughter that gives honor to her parents,
and someone that cares for, feels deeply for, and goes out of her way for others.
I hope that I am, at least, half the wife that Mama was,
half the mother she was, half the daughter she was, half the person she was…
That I leave behind a legacy of genuine love –
“to not love in only word or in tongue, but in action and in truth.”
I hope to be beautiful… like Mama.
The world is a better place because she was in it.
And I will always, always give thanks and bless God for the blessing of her.
My mother and my dearest friend…
she will always be missed so dearly… every day.
But I am so thankful for the Trustworthy Hope that I have to see her again…
One Glorious Day.