Wednesday, March 31, 2010

8 Long Years

Eight long years ago today, my mom died suddenly. She was fine one day and gone 2 weeks later. She felt sick on Friday, but she was well enough to work all day. She felt enough worse the next day that they took her to the ER. She died after a quick decent downhill 2 weeks later. SHOCKED! That is how we all felt.

I could not believe the call I got from my sister that Sunday morning that the doctors had found a mass in her abdomen. My first thought was "not both of us". After all it had been less than 2 years since Jeremy had lost his dad to cancer.

This couldn't happen to both of us, could it? Yes, it could and it did. His dad was 43 and we were 23 when Darrel died. We were 25 when my mama died at the age of 51. That is too young. We were old enough to realize that we had been blessed with good parents, but too young to ask all the questions we have thought of since. They never got to be grandparents and that would have been so fun. For the longest time I couldn't even mention my mother to my children. It was, and sometimes still is, too painful. I miss her so much.

Two good things came out of it though. My sister and I are stronger and closer than we might have been otherwise and I am a better Christian. Definitely not what I aspire to be, but better than I was when she died. At her funeral and visitation I was amazed at how many times I heard "She was such a good Christian lady." I grew up going to church and she taught children's classes my entire life since my sister and I were two of just a handful of children there. I was baptized when I was 13. I knew she was a Christian, but I didn't really understand what a good impression she made on so many people. Not just church members, but her clients in the beauty shop, friends from numerous types of churches, all kinds of people. I realized then that I owed it to her to do better. When you live away from family and are on your own, you can go to church or not. I never lived a wild life, but I didn't attend church regularly. My mama's death made me want to be better. It was one thing I could do for her, even though she isn't here anymore.

It would have been very easy to skip church tonight. The weather was beautiful and the kids wanted to go back out and play after I fed them supper. I have a lot to do since we are leaving to visit Tennessee on Friday. It would have been easy to decide to stay home, but we went anyway. Guess what the lesson in the auditorium class was? "The Virtuous Woman". This was part of mama's eulogy.

I love you so much Mama!

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