I was reminded that today is the 15th anniversary of my mom’s passing. It’s unbelievable how quickly time passes. My Mom and I were close, though there were times I didn’t agree with her and I’m sure she would have said the same thing about me. Yet I can still say after all these years that I would give anything to have one more day with her. One day to see her smile and hear her crazy sayings. One day so that I could tell her that now I understand a lot of things I didn’t understand back then. But we can’t turn back time.
My Mom died from a fall. She was not ill and no one was expecting her to die. One minute she was there and herself and less than a week later she was gone. I was living in another state at the time, but I am forever grateful to the Lord that I was at her house visiting that weekend. We had been a bit on the outs for a couple months but after a good weekend together when I left to go home, all was well. A couple hours later she had her fall. Had we not worked things out that weekend I would have felt awful forever that she died without us having had that chance.
Don’t wait to spend time with your loved ones. Tell them you love them often. If you are estranged from a loved one do all you know to do to work it out. One day it may be too late. We are not promised tomorrow. Two of my adult children have recently lost friends. One in his 30’s and one friend was just 40. Both left children behind. Another friend was in her 20’s. Just starting her life. I know that none of their loved ones was expecting them to die. Don’t leave things unspoken. Time passes too quickly and we can’t get it back when it’s gone.
We should take time every day to be thankful for our lives. Thankful that we woke up and we get to have another day to live. That we have time to enjoy our loved ones. Time to make memories and right old wrongs.
Hug that baby and rock them while they are small. Have patience when the little ones are dawdling and you are running late. Be kind to that older person you run into who wants to talk and tell you a story while you’re just wanting to get your groceries and get home. Be there in the moment. We spend so much time looking ahead we forget to enjoy the present.
When we look back over our lives the things we will remember will not be whether we got everywhere on time, or whether we were accomplished and got lots of awards and promotions at work. The things we will reflect on and remember are things like did I make a difference in this life? Did I give of myself to others? Was I the best spouse or parent or friend that I knew to be? Will people still think of me fondly and remember how I loved them when I’m gone?
Like my mom. Fifteen years later and the times we didn’t agree or the times she got on my last nerve are not the things I think about. I think about the way she loved her family and friends. The way she loved and enjoyed life. The way she served her community. The things my kids remember about her are not the gifts she gave them or monetary things but the time she spent with them. Hugs and love given. Get together’s at her house with family and loved ones. Time spent together. What will we be remembered as having “spent” our time on?
I’m guessing she would be surprised at how many people still miss her and talk about her all these years later. I don’t think she knew how much of an impact she made. I know I didn’t tell her enough how much I admired and appreciated her. And that is something I do regret. I look forward to the day we meet again and we can sit and have that long talk. Until then Mom.
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. 1 Cor 13:13