Today is my mother's birthday. As I was looking for her street address to mail a birthday card to her, I thought about everything I have learned from her over they years. My mother and I are quite a bit alike. We are both strong, opinionated, outspoken and stubborn women. There have been times when are similarities have made it difficult for us to get along. We like to argue in which we say the same things but come at each other from opposite points of view. When I was a much younger, more obnoxious, know-it-all, I drove her crazy, and vice-avers. We still have times when I'm sure she rolls her eyes at the stupid things I do., I still grit my teeth and wonder if she remembers what life was like when she was my age.
Those are the moments when I'm especially grateful to her for the beautiful lady she is.
When my mother was 'my age' she'd been a widow with six children below the age of 20. The love of her life, her best friend, and the light at the end of her tunnel was gone. Her parents were both gone as well, and she was alone.
For my brothers and sisters and I, the years following my father's death were dark and difficult. For my mother they were crippling. Yet, she didn't let the worst decade of her life strip her of her faith. No matter what happened to us, debt, disaster, disease, or doubt; My mother never faltered in her faith.
When most of us are asked to step forward one day at a time when life is too harsh,, she was asked to walk off a cliff. When most of us must stiffen our spine, straighten our shoulders and stand up to trials, she had to tie herself to the burning pyre and stand amidst the flames to protect us. She didn't always do it perfectly, but she always did it. She never left her God when at times it seemed he abandoned her. She never thought she was perfect, but she always knew the perfect love of her Savior. My Dad was her life line in a lot of things, but her love of her God, her family, and her faith in forever bound her together when everything else fell apart.
My mother was the person who taught me there isn't anything I can't do if The Lord is on my side. It is my favorite thing She and I have in common..
Someday the 19 th day of August will be a day my grandchildren or great grandchildren will not remember even though it's my mother's birthday. However, the generations of my family will always carry my mother with them. Her courage. Her strength, and her great faith. It has made me the woman I am, the wife, the mother, and the disciple of Christ that I strive to be everyday.
Thanks Mom, for the greatest gift of all, for your life, your sacrifices, and your desire to be a righteous woman of God.
I love you. Happy Birthday!