Three years ago today, I held your hand as you left your temporary home to live forever in the home your heart longed for, Heaven.
I think often about that day, Mom. I remember how our hearts were breaking as we stayed near your bed knowing our moments left with you were few. I remember how your body was frail and how the cancer had taken its toll on you. And yet, I remember you never looked so beautiful to me in all my life.
Even in your last moments on earth, you were such a witness to me. In life and in death, Mom, you glorified Christ. I still wanna be like you.
Mom, more than anything, I want you to know that your life continues to inspire and influence me. In your passing, I have learned that a mother’s love never leaves her daughter’s heart. I still hear you often giving me encouragement and words of wisdom.
I want you to know that all of those years that you poured your life into mine was not in vain. It mattered, Mom. Your love has left everlasting fingerprints on my heart. So many times, I make decisions because I know “it’s what Mom would want me to do.” So many times I make choices because I know “it’s what Mom would have done.”
You are not forgotten, Mom.
Every sacrifice you made, every tear you cried, every hug you gave, every shirt you folded, every meal you cooked, every prayer you prayed, every smile you smiled, every time you listened, every encouragement you shared…
It all made a difference in my life.
And now as a mom of four, I think I truly understand the depth of a mother’s love. And I often ask myself, “My mom loved me like this?!”
Sometimes I watch Eli as he naps, and I stare in wonder at his sweet little nose and long eye lashes. And my heart wells up almost to the point of pain as I realize that I could never love anything more.
And then it hits me, “Mom loved me like this?!”
As I stress over how to make ends meet and provide for our boys, I wonder how you did it all, and I think to myself, “Mom loved me like this?!”
When I lay in bed and night and pray (and sometimes worry) about the future of my children. How I wish I could shelter them from every pain in life and take away all their troubles. And my heart aches because I know that I cannot do it all and I cry out to Jesus. Then I wonder if you laid in bed at night and worried about me too? And I can help but think, “My mom loved me like this?!”
Oh, Mom, I always loved you. But as I get older and go through the stages as a wife and mother just like you did…I love you even more.
How truly amazing you were, Mom, and I “rise up and call you blessed.”
I know now why one of your favorite scriptures was “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” 3 John 1:4
I found a letter from you, Mom.
You wrote it to me in 1983. I was 13 years old, and you were only 39. I know we were going through one of those “mother/daughter stages” where we didn’t quite see eye to eye at times.
My Jonathan turned 13 just a couple of months ago, and I am 41. He is going through a “wanna grow up” stage, and I feel like one of those moms that is always harping on their children about everything. I desperately want him to know how much I love him, and I’m not trying to be so hard on him.
That’s why this letter means so much to me. You went through the same struggles I am going through.
Mom, I am married and away from home. I am happy and like myself.
And guess what, I can look back over my life and say without a doubt,
“My Mother loved us kids with all her heart!”
Thank you SO much, Mom!
I love you,