Saturday, September 7, 2013

Thanks Mom

Three things happened during the summer of 2012 for which I am grateful in one way or another. Today I’ll consider that which is nearest to my heart, the passing of my mother. For her, her life, and her love I am sincerely grateful.

My mom passed away June 20, 2012, just 9 days shy of her 95 birthday. As a child of the depression and young woman during WWII she was never wealthy, but always generous with what she did have. People remember her for baked bread, homemade pickles, garden produce and especially her Christmas cookies. Some people might not have thought her to be generous because she was very careful with money and how she spent it, but she gave what she could. For her humble generosity I am most grateful.

She had a passion for the written word that shown in her love of reading, crossword puzzles and letters. Anything with the written word that entered her house was held there for safe keeping. Books saved from closing libraries, letters from WWII, magazines, newspapers, recipes jotted down on a scrap of paper and on and on. She was always involved in a Bible study. Even in her later years as her eyesight succumbed to macular degeneration she rose early each and every morning to read her daily devotional with a magnifying glass. It was such a consistent part of her life. I remember her ‘hiding’ in the bathroom to read it when my brothers and I were young. And in her last year, her eyesight too poor to read for herself, Dad shared that special time with her. Her constant devotion made her a role model for which I am eternally grateful.

When my brother, Bob, and I cleaned out our folks home of over 30 years Mom and Dad were less than helpful. Mom had saved so much, too much. Many of you know the scene: too much stuff, too many memories. At the time I was tired and irritated at Mom for letting so much junk accumulate. I made a decision. I could be angry or I (well, Bob and I) could sift through the mess, get rid of the trash, give to family whatever they wanted, and sell the rest. This was the beginning of my online vintage shop. From Grandma’s Cedar Chest. I’ve sent Mom’s stuff all over the world. Mom always loved to travel so she enjoyed hearing stories of all the places her things were going. I include a short history of the item each time I sell something. Those who love vintage really love the whole story. Painful as it was, I am grateful for this experience, especially the bonding time with my brother.

Mom’s final gift to us was the beauty in her passing. We knew her hours here were brief as we left her unconscious in the hospice care unit to eat lunch. When we returned her beloved pastor was there. He said it was not unusual for someone who never wanted to call attention to themself to pass when loved ones were absent. She went to be with Jesus after he held her hands in prayer. I was blessed to witness the sweet, gentle passing of my mom. I am grateful.

There are more stories about Mom, more gifts. I miss her every day. Dad misses her more. That is a story for another day.


  1. A well written post -- your mom must have passed her love of words to you.

    1. Thank you! My brothers and I all have a love for words in one form or another. Mom was an English teacher, we had no choice!

  2. Thank you for sharing sweet memories of your Mom. Sounds like she was an amazing woman.