Mother’s Day is always a difficult time for me. My Mom lost her battle with multiple-myeloma cancer on July 16, 2007. I tend to think about all the life changing events that have taken place since her passing. She never got a chance to see me learn to play the piano; never shared in my joy at seeing my writing published; never saw her grandaughters become involved in sports; never saw her grandsons excel academically. She wasn’t around to see her children turn to God.
By now, I’ve obviously accepted the reality of her passing, but sometimes I don’t quite own the passing of a mourning period, totally. There are times when I will stray away from visiting my Dad because I can walk into his house and momentarily “forget” that she won’t be walking down the steps to join us in the basement, or walking around the corner to have a seat on her favorite couch in the living room. Visiting his house alone is a lonely time. I’ll take a seat on the tan leather furniture she purchased before her death, and just stare into her photographed eyes. It’s a nice picture; life-sized bust photo my Dad had made especially for her funeral. I stare into those eyes and, for just a moment, I hear her voice giving me instruction; a comforting word; laughing at something funny I may have said.
While sitting there alone, in the empty house of my childhood, I remember times taken for granted. It’s hard not to because everthing is still there. While my Dad has made the place his own, it seems that his tastes still revolve around some of the things my Mom used to love. Though she’s gone, she’s still in that house. I guess it works like a blessing and a curse. I can go visit her anytime I want by simply stopping by my Dad’s. At the same time, by visiting my Dad, I’m revisiting my Mom’s memory as well; catch-22 if ever there was one.
I have to be careful and cognizant of my emotions around Mother’s Day, because I have friends and family who take their mothers for granted. They simply don’t realize the gift of still having a mother around. I also have to remind myself that Mother’s Day isn’t solely about remembering my Mom, but celebrating my wife; the mother of our children. I have to remember that she needs to know how special she is to our family; to me.
So this year’s Mother Day will be number five without Laura Mae Smith. I’m used to her not being around now, but the memories still linger. Some Mother’s Day days are better than others, and I think that each passing year grants me a little more peace than the previous year. By God’s grace, hopefully I’ll see my Mom again, once I’ve given up the Spirit. Until that time comes, I want to make sure that my wife knows how much she’s appreciated on her day; I want my sister to know how much she’s loved, as a Mom; I want my Mother-in-law to know how much I love her for being around when I need her. I ‘ve still got mothers in my life.
This Mother’s Day, take a serious moment to thank your Mom for everything: the good and the bad. No one knows when their time is up. We have to let the ones we love know how important they are to us now. Thank your Mom for raising you. Kiss your step-mom for supporting you. Hug your mother-in law for being involved in your kids’ lives. Tell your sister she’s a great mom to your nieces and nephews. If your grandmother is still with you, go visit her! Don’t neglect your wives, men. They should be the most important women in our lives, and we should be obligated to let them know that. This Mother’s Day, make them all feel special. I’m not talking about buying a CVS brand generic card on the morning of, just before church service. That doesn’t count. Make it personal; make it engaging. Make it real. Trust me; it will be appreciated.
I love you and I miss you everyday …