So, today, May 10, 2015. Another Mother’s Day, another year.
Mom was very close to the same age I am now when this picture was taken at my oldest son’s wedding. I think it’s one of the best pictures we have of her, and I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see it on my sister’s page today.
My mom died three years ago this coming July. She was 87. For her, no time has passed. I find that concept very hard to get my head around, but I know that God says time will not exist in heaven.
She resisted dying as long as she could. She told me, about two weeks before she left, that she felt she should do more for “you girls.” I said, “Mom, we girls are 65 and 67. I think we’ll be ok.” Later, I told her she didn’t have to keep hanging on. That it would only be a moment before Sandy and I were there with her, even if it’s measured in years for us here.
My sister did the death watch. She’s a teacher, and so was free of classroom responsibilities. She watched at the bedside as Mom slowly let go of her life here in order to grab onto life there. From what Sandy told me, there was no drama. She was asleep, and the light just slowly faded from an eye that was partially open.
We miss her. She wasn’t perfect, and no one was any more aware of that than she was. Her heart, however, was always to do what God would have her to do. Many years ago, as Dad prepared for the ministry, Mom worried about becoming a pastor’s wife. She compared herself to some others that she held in very high regard, and felt she would never measure up. I don’t know for sure if she ever really got past that feeling of insecurity, but I do know that she was a blessing to countless people who mostly knew her as “June,” and considered her a friend.
My mom’s gifts were those of the home. She was a wonderful cook and homemaker; she sewed beautifully for most of her life, until her eyes began to betray her. She loved tp have people in. We called it “having company.” I don’t know if that’s a term that’s still in use today. She would flutter around, setting the prettiest table she could, fussing over the food she prepared, wanting everything to be just right. And it always was.
Her life with my dad wasn’t always an easy one. They certainly never were wealthy. They were part of The Great Generation, and Mom knew how to make a penny stretch until it cried for mercy 🙂 She didn’t have her first full set of pretty china until their 25th wedding anniversary, when the church Dad pastored gifted them with those dishes. Mom loved dishes, collected pink scalloped Depression Glass, and always enjoyed getting something new. Today, new brides expect to start life with a full supply of china, silver, glassware, and linens. Mom was thrilled to get something pretty from the grocery store when the store ran a promotion. You know, spend so much money, get so much off your next piece of dinnerware. I remember one time when Tide Detergent was offering a free tumbler in their giant-sized box of soap powder. Mom was thrilled. She wasn’t hard to please.
So many memories come to mind as I’m writing. Saturday night baths and hair-setting sessions in preparation for Sunday. All the traditional holidays. Her excitement over finishing a new dress for one of us. So many good memories.
Yes, I still miss her. It’s always too soon when a parent dies, But a part of her will always be with me, and sometimes, when I glance into a mirror, I see her for just a second.