Tag Archives: Mothers’ Day

PANDEMIC 2020 VISION: Mother’s Day Addendum

“But behind all your stories is always your mother’s story, for hers is where yours begins.”- Mitch Albom

Like most of you, I’ve kept myself busy for the past 55 days doing a lot of things that I was just too busy to do prior to being secluded. Like any of you that have pets – mine have become extremely spoiled and used to having me around 24/7. I love it. They love it. I guess we are both spoiled.

I got to talk to all four of my kidlets today, and took the choc lab girls for a social distance visit to my one daughter that lives near by. We walked on the path through the woods they have created during their time at home. Ate some snacks. Watched the kids play on one of the best tree swings ever. Laughed at 4 dogs adjusting to each other again. Held our breaths to take some pictures. Then I came home, washed my hands, and re-applied my essential oils.

All-in-all, a lull in the storm – a break to breathe – a time to remember who taught me how to breathe in storms. My mom…and dad…and Grandma Mac.

From the earliest bedtime stories to watching them face stormy times in their personal lives to the collective times of facing storms with their nation. I remember not swimming on very hot days in the summer during the polio epidemic. I remember standing in a long line on the cafeteria steps of my soon-to-be elementary school to take the first dose of the polio vaccine. I never felt their fear; I just followed them.

I still am.

I watched them both deal with my father’s heart disease. Listen to news accounts of The Bay of Pigs and continuing wars. Get my mother elected as village clerk with my dad beside her every step of the way. Mourn the murder of a president, a civil rights leader, a senator. Shelter, care, and spend time with their brothers and sisters. Be at the bedside of daughter hospitalized for 7 days for mono. Wash hands a lot during the Hong Kung Flu epidemic. Watch out a darkened window during a once-in-a-lifetime flood that came within feet of their home. Prepare for that once-sick daughter to go off to college amid an epidemic.

Yet – – in all those times, I never felt their fear reaching out to me – even though I’m sure that fear was there. After all, their daughter had a compromised immune system, and her father had already experienced two heart attacks. Instead, this daughter saw them on their knees – saw them hold hands in church – heard their prayers – and watched them from the stairs as they danced together the night before they took her to college.

My mom – and dad – both loved to tell stories about their families. Truth be told, I wish I had paid more attention and written some of them down. Later in life, my mom was able to take her mom on cruise. Grandma Mac’s smiling eyes when she talked about that cruise was beyond special. You can see it in the pictures they brought back just as I see it in my memory.

Stories are the threads that tie families into an expanding tapestry of His creation. A Creation story woven together by individuals, families, nations as His artistic Hand weaves the strong, colorful strands with the weakened, broken strands to create His perfect design from the beginning. His Grace blending them seamlessly together.

Honor thy father and mothers – not just today – but in all days.

“Your eyes saw my body. In your book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there were none of them.” Ps 139:16 

 [personal images]

PANDEMIC 2020 VISION : Mother’s Day

“Honor your father and mother, so that your days may be long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.” Ex 20:12

Today is the 54th day (by my count) of quarantine, and during it all, I have been writing a couple letters a day. When I was growing up, letter writing was the social media of the day. After all – long distance phone calls cost money back in those days, and the internet – well – lets just say it was a twinkle in the sky waiting to be pulled down to earth.

When the day came to clean out my parents’ home, I found lots of letters and postcards stuffed into corners, boxes and even a tiny suitcase. Letters from friends who had moved to other states, extended family who lived outside an easy drive, WWII buddies who had written to Dad, brothers who were serving in other countries, sisters who lived just 50 miles away. Letters unfinished in notebooks.

It was a treasure chest of times gone by.

Most of Mom and Dad’s letters were written on plain paper or notebook paper. I still have a couple they wrote to me in college, and a couple they wrote to each other during WWII that are beyond precious to me. Every now and then – when I just need to hear their voices in my head – I will pull out those letters and read them again. It is like an audio that never gets erased.

As I grew older, I noticed when Mom did buy cards, she would buy special ones. She bought one for my Mother-in-Law when she was battling cancer. Helen cried as she shared it with me; telling me how special it was because of the letter and the poem. Mom’s favorite cards usually did have poems written by Helen Steiner Rice. So as I wrote letters during this time of isolation, I pulled out some of Mom’s old cards and some of the poetry books that she collected by this poet. Thus, I included one with every letter I wrote as a tribute to her.

So – since tomorrow is the 55th day of quarantine (by my count), I am writing my Mother’s Day Card to Mom and my Mother-in-Law, Helen, in Heaven. Couldn’t ask for two better mothers who brought so much wisdom and love to my life. Needless to say, I’m enclosing a Helen Steiner Rice Poem.

“A Mother’s Love”

A Mother’s love is something
that no one can explain,
It is made of deep devotion
and of sacrifice and pain,

It is endless and unselfish
and enduring come what may
For nothing can destroy it
or take that love away . . .

It is patient and forgiving
when all others are forsaking,
And it never fails or falters
even though the heart is breaking . . .

It believes beyond believing
when the world around condemns,
And it glows with all the beauty
of the rarest, brightest gems . . .

It is far beyond defining,
it defies all explanation,
And it still remains a secret
like the mysteries of creation . . .

A many splendored miracle
man cannot understand
And another wondrous evidence
of God’s tender guiding hand.

– HELEN STEINER RICE  mother-in-laws[personal image]

Sanctuary 2015

mothers day 2015 b“When I tried to understand all this,
it troubled me deeply…”

When I read this Bible verse today, it caught me. I continue to read and re-read because it holds so much truth for me today. There is just so much about life we don’t understand. Why our loved ones have to die long before we truly understand how important they are to our lives. Why our children grow up way long before we are ready for them to soar out of our everyday lives. Or even – why doesn’t everyone think the way we do? That is probably the most vexing, right?

“till I entered the sanctuary of God;
then I understood their final destiny.” — Psalm 73:16–17

mother day 2015aThen there are weekends like this one. Weekends that remind me where my true sanctuary lies. Long talks with the Grands curled into my arms as we play tic-tac-toe with hearts and angels. “Face” time and yakky calls with the grown kid-lets over the thousands of miles between us. Hugs and laughter from the newly “mastered” daughter. A single rose from the garden that my hubby put in glass to bless our table. A large double peony from my mama’s garden transplanted from OH to NC which bloomed for the very first time this weekend. It is His Sanctuary…the family…a mobile sanctuary that He created for us; to help us endure the turmoil created by our own free will.

This weekend, (just by chance? I think not. Thank you, Father.),I started a new images (1)devotional by Mark Batterson, Praying Circles Around the Lives of your Children. The funny thing is – that the more I read it, the more I realize that it isn’t just about praying circles around your children. It is about praying circles around all those that are in your family circle…and your extended family circle…and in your extended- extended family circle…and even – for your extended heavenly family circle. Mothers, Fathers, Grandmothers, Grandfathers, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Steps, bio or adopted, friends, pets……….

“Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matt ~18:18

1951Today was a special day. Not because it had an official title declared by Congress. Not because of the gifts (although an xoxox typerwriter bracelet, fresh fruit and flowered book bags are, indeed, treats that I treasure). It is rather, the voices on the other end of a phone, the hand-written card/blog/statuses, the mama flower that bloomed it’s fragrance once again, a single rose, each individual effort that reachs out and binds our familial circle a little tighter here on earth and in heaven.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everyt situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:6-7

My sanctuary stands firmly upon its foundational rock tonight. It cradles me as I pray and binds my prayers around those I love. Those things that were troubling me, trouble me no longer for I understand the final destiny has already been beheld by the One who created us all and my soul basks in that perfect LOVE. Needless to say, I am feeling humbled and blessed.