Monday, March 12, 2007

A Most Excellent Remembrance of Mother

My mother’s birthday will be Wednesday. As some of you may know she left us very quietly on July 15th. Many of you have been kind as I’ve used this site to post many personal memories of her. I know that you will understand as I devote the next three days to remembering her and letting you know a little bit more about someone who influenced my life so much. The picture featured here is Mother with Dear Sister's daughter.

The following piece of writing was written by my sister at the time our mother passed way. This piece was read at Mother’s funeral by my pastor. Dear Sister sent it to me in advance before the funeral. After I read it for the first time I explained to Dear Sister that I rarely award a student with a high A in writing because writing is never finished. A piece of writing can always be corrected…altered…revised in some way. It can always be improved. However, Dear Sister captured the essence of who our Mother was so intently that I told her I would give it my highest accolade…a well deserved “MOST EXCELLENT” and a numerical one hundred. Here are Dear Sister’s words….

If Mother was anything, she was CARING. She CARED about everything, and most things too much. She cared about family and friends, and stray animals, and strangers in need, and people in the news.

She never forgot to send you a card, or telephone to let people know she remembered their special occaision. If you were sick or experiencing a hospital stay you could count on a card from Geri. She was forever finding things in magazines or the paper that she thought you might need or find interesting. She took care in cutting it out, writing a note on it and mailing it to us.

She loved to cook. She loved to write. She would sit at the kitchen table for hours on end and write letters and stories. Mother had written down every memory growing up around Mt. Carmel and Canton. She had penpals and loved to swap information on their different lifestyles and countries. She had friends…real friends. They took each other to lunch on their birthday. Mother’s favorite place was the Picadilly at Greenbriar Mall. A stuffed green pepper and a piece of pie and she was happy.

She was an organizational icon. As far back as I can remember, she provided you with something you needed to know. Family and friends anniversaries, births and deaths, graduations, when someone called her and when she returned the call (and what time), whether it rained or the sun was shining on a particular day…..everything went on Mother’s calendars and in her spiral notebooks. And just for a point of reference----today if we needed to know what our family had for dinner on Wednesday, June 4, 1968---just check the calendar. It’ll be there…and you’ll find it because she saved each and every calendar and notebook. [Elementaryhistoryteacher] and I have snapshots of our life history detailed in these calendars and notebooks.

Was Mother a packrat? She said no, she was a gatherer of treasures. Every kindness, every gesture, every gift and momento was saved. And true to her organizational icon standard, you know it was tagged with who the sender was, the occaision, AND the date. Laundry markers were purchased regularly at our house growing up.

Mother wasn’t a rich person. She wasn’t a materialistic person, but she was one of the wealthiest women I knew. She was wealthy in the sense that she had all she required to live a wonderful life. She thought herself so blessed to have the family and friends she had.
What she never really realized is how blessed we were to have her touch our lives.

You can read about my thoughts on family bibles and all about Mother's Bible here.

Tomorrow I’m going to share with you a few pages from one of those spiral notebooks, and on Wednesday, Mother’s actual birthday, I will be presenting one of HER stories here for you to enjoy.

3 comments:

Jarod said...

An excellent and heartfelt eulogy, ETH. It was a pleasure to read about her.

jsswt said...

Wonderful story. I am sure she was an amazing person.

elementaryhistoryteacher said...

Thanks for the comments. Yes, she was pretty amazing.