It will soon be twelve years since you passed away – twelve years since your last and final Mother’s Day here on earth. Twelve years later, and still I miss you. Every once in awhile I see or hear something that I know would amuse you, and I think to myself, I have to remember to tell Mom about that. Every once in awhile when I am driving on a certain road, I think, let me stop in for a quick visit with Mom and Dad. But both of you have a different address now.
On one of my last visits with you, as you were making your final preparations to meet Our Lord, you had an urgent request for me. It was to make sure that Dad would be okay. Even then, you were thinking of others. And I am happy to report that Dad lived out his days well taken care of. Of course you know that by now.
Although I am 63 years old, I still remember snippets of my very early childhood. I remember how I was your pride and joy, a kind of love that I would not fully understand until I, too, had a child of my own.
And although you were never harsh with me, although you never lectured me, you still found ways to impart to me your values, in ways that made a deep and lifelong impression. I still remember that pretty girl I met, and thought I might date, until it crossed my mind that she was not the sort that I could bring home to you. My life could have taken a very wrong turn without your invisible guidance.
One day there was a message on my phone. It was from your doctor. The news was bad. So began a few weeks that would turn my life upside down. Through it all, you were the courageous one. Knowing that your condition was incurable, knowing that the end would come soon, you demonstrated a faith that few others could keep under such circumstance. Yours was the bravery that does not deny fear, but rather conquers it. Yours was the serenity that is not untroubled, but which puts troubles in their proper perspective.
Mom, I cannot count the many ways in which you were an inspiration in this life. And the counting did not stop when you left this life. It goes on. True, I forge my own path now, but it is a path that would even now go very wrong were I never to pause and remember you.
When will we meet again? Perhaps soon, perhaps years from now, I do not know. But I look forward to it. And when next you greet me at heaven’s door, I know that you will greet me, and seat me at the kitchen table.
Gosh, Mom, how I do miss your cooking!
Robert Arvay is a regular contributor to The Patriot’s Notepad.