Mother’s Day 11 Years Later

My mother and me, perhaps in 2008

It is hard to describe the memories I’ve had of my mother these last 11 years without her.

Yes, there are the anecdotal memories, like the time she prayed with me to give my life to Jesus Christ and the Bible verse she read to assure me that I belonged to Him. And the time she carried me from the creek up the incline of our back yard toward the house when something exploded into my knee while we were burning trash. I can almost see her tears as the family car drove away, leaving me in Chicago for my first year of college.

Usually, what comes to mind is a mish-mash of everyday memories of what she was like: the sound of her voice, that funny sniff she had, the substantial aaah-choo of her sneeze, the way she always knew where something was if you couldn’t find it, the smile on her face as she watched her family having a good time.

But what stays with me the most is the most difficult to put into words. It’s the reason why seeing a pattern of sunlight on the curtains pierces my heart as I’m instantly a little girl again, watching sunshine make similar patterns in the living room while Mom is just down the hall. Or the bittersweet ache that comes when I hear a car driving past on a rainy street in springtime, transporting me to the open front screen door of our house letting in fresh, rain-soaked air while Mom is behind me making something in the kitchen. Then there’s the connection I feel to the creek in my neighborhood, its ribbon of tricking water running all the way back to the creek of my childhood, where my sisters and I play while Mom watches us from the large, square storm window.

The presence of my mother and the memory of home. The two are inseparable, cherished, etched into the core of who I am. The person of my mother, stamped so deeply and lovingly into my soul—a gift from a blessed and secure childhood that I can never take for granted again.

2 Responses to “ “Mother’s Day 11 Years Later”

  1. Linda says:

    Beautiful. Poignant. I also am transported back to the living room, the creek, and the kitchen window. She created a secure, safe place not just for her daughters but for all, including me. Thank you for sharing.

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