Thursday, March 12, 2009

Happy 71st, Mama!

Today would have been my mom's 71st birthday. Instead, Jesus took her home to Heaven 30 years ago (this Sunday); three days after her 41st birthday. We choose to celebrate her BIRTH date and her wonderful life instead of the death date.

Over the past few weeks, in the "bloggy planning" section of my mind, I had planned to celebrate this special day with lots of pictures of Mama, Daddy and all of us kids. Unfortunately, I'm on a special mission out of town this week, and I'm not home to upload those. But a little serendipity of my mission, is that I was able to spend a good bit of time with my Daddy today. We had lunch and a great time riding around, looking at my old stomping grounds, seeing all the changes and reminiscing about "the good old days." So, instead of the upbeat, fun, picture-laden post I'll have to settle for this somewhat melancholy post while I'm out of town without Mr. Fix-It and Bex.

So, here's the deal: I've REALLY been missing her lately. I just want my Mama! I don't know why I've seemed to miss her more this year, than last...I mean, come on! It's been THIRTY years!!! But I guess I'm just seeing so much more what SHE missed not growing old with us and it makes me sad. It also makes me sad to realize what "I've" missed over these past years without her! Everytime I hear about someone "not getting along with their mother" I just want to shake them and tell them how much I would give to be able to "get along" with my mom or nurse her through an illness! It's hard to appreciate what you have right in front of you, isn't it? Especially when things are hard. I had the same problem when she was here with us. My perspective has changed.

My Bex is 17 1/2 now. I was only one year older (18 1/2) when Mama went to hang out with Jesus. I look at Bex and think how young I really was back then and yet, I thought I was sooooo grown up! Age can really change your perspective, can't it? I must say, God has sent some wonderful women into my life to fill this gap...but it still just ain't the same! I want MY mama!

My mom got to see her first grandchild, but she missed numbers 2-11. She was at my oldest brother's wedding, but missed the next three. I can only imagine how proud she would be of all her grandkids and a terrific Grandma. She would have been proud of her children, too! She was all of 5'2", sort of quiet (like me! NOT! LOL!!), but you had no doubt when enough was enough! She knew how to get things done and she didn't need the accolades or praise when she did things behind the scenes for someone else. She was the glue that held so much of our family together. She would have NEVER put up with some of the petty family squabbles that seem to plague our family right now. She would have made everybody kiss and make up or wish they had!

Today, when Daddy and I walked into a restaurant for lunch, we saw some familiar faces at one of the tables. When I realized it was one of my old friends from high school, I went over to speak to her. After our initial hello-how are you's, she said she recognized my dad when he walked in, and saw me and at first thought it was my mom with him...then she thought, "no, that can't be"...and realized it must be ME! It's not the first time someone's told me I look like her, but today it was really special for God to remind me that I carry her likeness. That made my day!

I have no doubt in my mind that Mama would NOT wish to be back here on earth...and if we truly knew what awaited us at the Savior's feet, I doubt we would wish her back...but that little niggling pain in my heart does wish her back sometimes! For purely selfish reasons.

I know our wonderful Creator has a plan for our lives, losing Mama was part of that plan for me, my brothers and my Dad....but I still wonder ... Someday, I'm going to ask Jesus "Why?" And I know that I'll be wrapped in His arms when I get my answer...and it will be enough.

Stay tuned....and oh! Go call your Mama and tell her you love her!