My mom never uttered empty words—she spoke life and truth everywhere she went. She was a consistent example, full of true wisdom, and had a unique ability to make me smile.
But she could also be…irritably on time…showing up 15 minutes early and then ask me why I was late. Frankly, she didn’t suffer fools very well either, often being impatient when people’s minds didn’t move at the speed of hers. I also always wondered why, with all of her reading and knowledge, her superior intellect, and creative brilliance, she wasn’t as generous as she could have been to build more space and capacity to share it.
After losing my mom in 2015, I’ve had countless moments in which others ask me what she was like. In those moments, I find myself creating a picture of my mom through words; I speak of her love for God, her love of music, her intelligence, and her strength. While all these qualities were true, I realized that this picture was only a blurry portrayal of who she really was. I realized there was so much more to my mom than only her “perfect” qualities; the parts of her that made her human were just as true and beautiful and important.
When we lose a loved one, especially someone as significant as a mother, it can feel like a sort of betrayal to think about their shortcomings. However, I believe remembering rightly is to see someone for who they were fully, to love them for their strengths and despite their weaknesses. This is the best way to honor someone. This is what truly loving means.
As Mother’s Day approaches, I relish in the excitement to someday be reunited with Mom, to experience her as she fully is. Oh, how sweet it will be to hear her voice, to touch her face, to hear another song on her Yamaha grand, to pray with her, and to laugh with her. To hear one more corny pun, one more brilliant thought, one more perfectly placed Scripture in the middle of my day.