It wasn't until I had children of my own that I have really begun to understand the depth of love that my mother had for me. There are times in the midst of parenting that I have moments of clarity as to how my mother felt as she raised Don, Greg, and me.
Once, as I was eating a salad, which no toddler likes, Gwenyth asked me if she could eat the croutons. Now, if it weren't for croutons, I wouldn't eat salads myself so, I was very annoyed. At that moment, I flashed back to the gazillion times that my mother let me eat every crouton off of her salads. How annoyed she must have been! But, she never let it show. At the moment of my annoyance, I took a deep breath and let Gwenyth eat all the croutons off my salad. Thank you Mom, for always giving me your croutons and I promise to give them, with joy, to my children.
My mom didn't say much. It was her actions that spoke the most. Again, it's only after having children that I recognize her sacrifices of love brought her great joy.
Her actions, even up until the end of her life taught me that Jesus is the Way, Truth, and Life and He will take care of us. She taught me to pray about everything. She taught me to sing -- and it's okay to make up the song as you go. She taught me that there is value in relationships and a few very close friends are better than hundreds of acquaintances. She modeled what a loving and faithful wife is. She modeled patience and endurance. She modeled strength, beauty, and grace.
I will miss her more than words can say, but I praise God that she is in heaven with a new body and restored mind!