my mom was my idol. fourteen years after her death, i still talk about her… about what a great woman she was — intelligent, humble, simple, beautiful, multi-talented, creative, selfless, stimulating, interesting, knowledgeable, caring, patient, helpful, generous, loyal, honest, and easy to please… a wonderful cook, an expert homemaker, a dear friend, the coolest and best mother in the world! she was everyone’s mama.
it was from her that i first learned about Jesus, God, and the Holy Spirit… about sacrifice and penance… about love and forgiveness, courage and humility, wisdom and strength, about grace, and faith that knows no bounds.
whenever i needed advice on anything, she was there to give it to me with kindness and definitely without judgment. she was the spiritual advisor of my life. and, i may not have been her best student but i still managed to learn a great deal from her — through her words and deeds.
“It is not wrong for you to depend on your “Elijah” for as long as God gives him to you. But remember that the time will come when he must leave and will no longer be your guide and your leader, because God does not intend for him to stay. Even the thought of that causes you to say, “I cannot continue without my ’Elijah.’ ” Yet God says you must continue. You now have to put to the test what you learned when you were with your “Elijah.” (My Utmost For His Highest)
fast forward to 2011, and i find myself continually recalling her ways and thoughts in the light of her faith in God, in herself, in me, and in my older sisters. although she is no longer physically present, the memory of her shared life inspires me to do my best to remain true to the values she inculcated in us since we were small and which are only being appreciated this late in life.
but it doesn’t matter. i am close to God now because i was so close to my mother.
“my dear Lord, i thank You for mama and the exceptional gift that she was to papa, to me, my sisters, the family, and to everyone she knew. bless her that in her selflessness, she too may find more than the joy and kindness she brought to many. thank You, dear God!”