This is the follow-up article from our Tuesday blog post.We are on the subject of the loss of our mother and how it has affected us as moms. If you missed the first post you can go to this link here.
Blog post #2 in honor of our mother is written by our older sister, Raquel. In regards to which daughter knew our mother the best, Raquel would be the one. We hope that this article is a blessing to those who read it and can be encouraged to be the mom God created you to be.
Raquel’s Memories: When I was about 9, I had a pretty heated argument with my mom that later left me feeling remorseful. In an effort to lighten my conscience-stricken heart, I wrote an apology to her.
Now, my mother was a very busy woman… at that point she had 4 kids and was homeschooling. She and my father owned and operated their own business, where she worked full-time. She spoke at women’s events, sang at church, sewed us outfits… the list goes on and on. She was BUSY. And yet, in the midst of that chaos, she carved out some time to sit down and reply to a 9 year old’s letter of apology.
In that letter she wrote about how special I was. She quoted the verse in Isaiah about “my name written on the palm of HIS hands.” I literally thought it was my name (and my name only!) tattooed in God’s palm. That letter gave me all the feels. Even as a 9 year old child, I knew this was an important letter. My mother not only forgave me, but took the time to write (in ink!) how very important I was to her – and to God. That letter is one of my most cherished possessions. As a 9 year old, that letter proved the importance of my existence.
Now, as a mother myself, that letter proves something new: my mother’s intentional parenting. She knew what was most important at that very moment in that 9 year old’s heart: Not the cobwebs in the corners or the dirty dishes in the sink. It was a life lesson. A molding of my heart. Even today, as a mother of three, that letter has taught me to be intentional in my mothering EVERY DAY.
Intentional in my actions
Intentional in my words to my children
Intentional in my words to my husband (because you know those kiddos are listening!)
Intentional in teaching my kids God’s Word
Intentional in making sure they know they are fully loved
Intentional in writing them letters
Intentional, because our days are numbered and you don’t know how many you have. I’m sure most people would have looked at my mom and thought she had plenty of time to mold and shape all six of those little ducklings’ of hers. But, she didn’t. She died at the young age of 38.
I’m in my 30’s now and the thought crosses my mind often. “How many more days do I get with my children?” That might sound morbid, but I don’t mean for it to. It’s a way I stay intentional. It’s a reminder to look for “heart molding” opportunities in the daily grind of raising three children. It’s a way I remain thankful. Thankful for the days I do have with my family. I wake up every morning and thank God for another day. As my dad would say, “Another day to honor the Lord in all you do!”
Now, don’t let this story fool you. I am not a saint of a mother. I’ve had some not-so-pretty parenting days. And, that mom of mine I speak so fondly of… Well, she was human, too. Sometimes, after people die, we have a way of making them out to be a saint. My mother was not a saint. In the very short time that I knew my mother, I learned some very important life lessons. Such as, buy white china because it never goes out of style. This life lesson bellowed from her pea-green china filled cupboards and burnt orange kitchen appliances.
These little nuggets of wisdom arose from both good and bad parenting decisions on her part. But, what I truly admired about my mom was she was able to look back at those occasions and own up to her failures. She admitted to me when she had not been the kindest or most patient mother. She used those moments to teach me… teach me how I should act as a mom, as a woman, as a daughter of the One true King. She did this to an 11 year old! I appreciate that so much! She shared nuggets of wisdom with me that were well beyond my years. Ideas that I didn’t fully grasp until I became a mother myself.
And, thank God she did! Because, at the tender age of 11, I lost my mom to cancer. The mom that taught me how to put my socks on. The mom that led me to Christ. The mom that trucked me to ballet and gymnastics and school and church and sleepovers and birthday parties and the pool. The mom that stayed up all hours of the night sewing the most beautiful dresses just to make me feel special. Truly, a Proverbs 31 woman. A mom that was INTENTIONAL.