March is a month of remembrances for my family: Papa’s passing on March 8th, Mama’s birthday on March 15th, and their anniversary on March 17th.
Today Mama would have turned 85. We were so blessed to celebrate her 80th birthday three months before she died, an occasion of great joy.
This week as my younger brother, Dwight, and I discussed Mama’s birthday we remembered her love and many occasions of joy. Although our family weathered our share of tough times, Mama’s faithful love left a big legacy of joy in our hearts.
She took such tender care of our Papa, who was a quadriplegic for 28 years of their 58 year marriage. From a wheelchair to his last 12 years completely bedfast, Mama steadfastly looked after him. Serving tirelessly as his hands and feet, she always did it with a smile!
Mama faced many challenges, but she chose to be joyful. The last few years of their lives, she and Papa set aside time every Sunday afternoon to go through hymns. They memorized the words of a hymn and then would sing it together. During stressful times Mama and Papa often joyously sang these hymns for comfort and consolation.
Mama delighted in so many things. She loved bluebirds, violins, music, flowers (especially gardenias), and she really loved CHOCOLATE (something my sisters, nieces and I inherited from her.)
Taking Mama out for treats at Carrabba’s Italian Grill, she was always up for the challenge of their SOGNO DI CIOCCOLATA…
One of Mama’s cards that I use as a bookmark (and see every day) has an apt message for this Sunday in Lent. Sent to me when I worked in a Middle Eastern conflict zone, she said,
“God has brought you through ‘many a danger’ there. May His wonderful grace and great love continue to be your companions as you finish your course – running well to the end.”
Mama finished her course, running well to the end with a legacy of love and many occasions of joy we treasure in our hearts.
grace, peace & joy
Virginia : )
“Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10