Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Lonely Mother's Day

This special day I wanted to take time to celebrate my mom and my mother-in-law. They both passed away 2 weeks apart in October 2007. My mother-in-law died from a heart attack unexpectedly, yet peacefully in her bed in the early morning hours. She was cuddled up to her loving husband of 52 years and was so beautiful and serene that it was hard to believe that she was really gone. Her strong faith and her complete readiness to go whenever God called her gave those of us in shock over her death, the comfort to get us through. I am truly blessed for having such a wonderful faith-filled woman as my mother-in-law.

And then there's my mom. Words cannot express the depth of my love for her and the thankfulness I have for such a precious gift of a mom. Her beauty and her charm mixed with her faith, wonderful wit and humor made her such a delight to be around. She became sick right after my dad passed away 3 years ago. She was a breast cancer survivor for 16 years, but the very treatment that cured her then, caused her liver damage which eventually took her life. But I can't help believe that she really died from a broken heart after losing her one true love of 47 years. She and my dad were such a special and rare couple, always putting each other first and modeling what true commitment looks like. Their marriage withstood many challenges and heartaches including the loss of their child, my sister Patti, who died at only 8 years old. But their love and commitment to each other never wavered, nor did their faith and abiding love for God and the church.

So, although today was a lonely Mother's Day, it was a day to remember and celebrate our beautiful mothers and the incredible gift that we have been given in having such loving women that we can call "Mom". For so many years I would secretly bemoan the hectic schedule on Mother's Day shlepping all the kids from one family to the next, selfishly thinking, "Isn't this supposed to be MY day too?" In the back of my mind, I knew that someday I wouldn't have to worry about the schedule, but the reason for that was too unbearable to think about. Today was the reality of that dreaded thought, and now, how I yearn for those harried holidays of back and forth and crazy running around. I missed not having anyone to get a gift for, no one to bring flowers to, and especially no one to kiss and hug. No one and nothing can replace the presence and love of your mom. So, enjoy those you love while you have them to love on.

Happy Mother's Day to all Moms everywhere.