Wednesday, May 22, 2013
I know Mother's Day has passed, but if your mother is still with you, then maybe it should still be Mother's Day.
And if you're a mother, then you know that every day is Mother's Day, because you never stop mothering. We don't have switches that can easily be turned off.
I found this picture the day before I celebrated my first Mother's Day without her.
That day at the beach, the waters seemed calm.
And most of the days that my mother and I shared were.
But as I grew older, a hidden undercurrent started to form beneath the calm waters.
An undercurrent that tried it's best to take mother and daughter down.
An undercurrent, I believe, that was caused by expectations.
Her expectations of me, and mine of her.
But her love for me and mine for her, and the grace of God, kept mother and daughter safe.
The doctors told us that we would have two months to say good-bye to her, but we had fourteen.
Fourteen months of tears and laughter. Fourteen months of new friendships formed with caregivers and nurses. Fourteen months of trusting God with fears and decisions.
Fourteen months of calm waters. But also fourteen months of that hidden dangerous undercurrent of expectations.
Fourteen months of grieving. The first two months we grieved with daddy. The last twelve we grieved for him.
Who knew that we would say good-bye to him first?
Mother's last week came this past January, and the practice of saying good-bye over those long months didn't make it any easier.
I walked into her bedroom early one morning. The sleep that the caregiver's presence was supposed to bring to me hadn't come. I was a mess. Half asleep, bed hair, red eyes, and coffee spilled down the housecoat.
That's when I heard my mother say to me, "Hey Sweetie."
And with those two words, I was just a little girl again, at the beach with her momma.
And there was no undercurrent.
Love had rescued us both.