This Mother’s Day, I have so much to be thankful for. I was blessed to have a wonderful mother, to become a mother to two amazing boys, and to now be a grandmother to two of the most adorable grandkids.
As a little girl, my mom was my hero. She was the glue that held our family together, a pillar of strength for my brothers and me during some pretty tough years, and an example to follow as she modeled a love for God and a sacrificial love for others. Mom loved us unconditionally and became one of my very best friends as I began raising a family of my own.
Mom wasn’t perfect, even though for many years I thought she was. She was, like the rest of us, simply trying to navigate life the best way she knew how. My, my –– how I can relate.
On a Monday morning in early May 2005, just a few months before my mom’s seventieth birthday, her caregiver called to tell me she couldn’t speak. Her health had been deteriorating for about six months prior and the doctors believed she was having mini-strokes.
But, that day was very different. Mom was confused and unable to respond. So, I rushed her to the hospital. Ten minutes later, in the emergency room, Mom had a grand mal seizure that put her in a coma.
For the next five days, I spent virtually twenty-four hours a day by mom’s side. Her doctors were optimistic and her vital signs were good, she just wasn’t waking up. When her neurologist asked if he could pray over her, and I immediately said, “Yes!”
Whether God chose to heal my mother on earth or by taking her to heaven, I had only one request from the doctor before he prayed: “Please pray for God’s will to be done.” After he prayed and left the room, I sat in the chair next to Mom’s bed and returned to reading the Bible to her. I found comfort in reading God’s Word and as I read out loud, I firmly believed Mom was comforted too.
The next morning, by mother’s side, as I spent quiet time with God and asked Him for one thing; Lord, if You decide to take Mom to heaven, please take her in such a way that I have no doubt it’s You. I simply needed reassurance. Being exhausted and hurt, left me vulnerable to discouragement and doubt.
As each doctor came in for their morning rounds, they consistently reported that mom’s vital signs were great. Her lungs, heart, kidneys and virtually every organ she had were functioning properly –– she just wasn’t waking up.
“Don’t give up,” I remember her neurologist saying. “She can still pull out of this.” At the same time, he warned, if she didn’t, it could be weeks before her organs would begin to shut down.
A few hours after the doctors left mom’s room, her sister Pat arrived from North Carolina. I was thankful Aunt Pat was there to help. She planned on staying with Mom so I could get a quick shower and a nap. We talked quietly and I then stood at the end of Mom’s bed, just before walking out of the room. She looked peaceful, but it was painful to see her so unresponsive. I remember saying, it’s just so hard to see her like this.
As I made my way toward the door to leave, I felt compelled to turn around and look at Mom, one last time. I immediately noticed that something wasn’t right. As I scanned her body, my eyes immediately went to her hands and before our very eyes, the color was draining out of my mother’s body. Her fingers, hands, and then wrists, were gradually getting darker –– they were turning blue. As we both watched in a kind of dumbfounded stupor, Mom’s spirit left her body and she crossed over to heaven.
It happened just that fast.
Tears streamed down my face as I recalled my morning prayer. God took my mother from this earth in a miraculous way, the doctors were in shock at how quickly Mom had passed, and I knew without any doubt, God had taken her home.
I had never doubted God’s love for Mom or me, but this experience solidified something even deeper in my soul, in my spirit –– I thank God, He chose that day, to honor me with this cherished reassurance and beautiful memory. Join me today in thanking God for the many wonderful mothers who give of themselves freely and love unconditionally, children of their own and so many others as well.
Happy Mother’s Day Mom –– I look so forward to seeing you again –– one day in heaven.