Friday, May 11, 2018

The Card Not Sent



As Mother's Day approaches, I am experiencing many different feelings and memories. This will be the second Mother's Day since my Mom's passing in June of 2016.

I recently stumbled across a Mother's Day card that I had not sent. I do not remember buying this for Mom but obviously I did. And evidently I was buying it on behalf of at least some of my sisters and brothers because the message inside was:
"We'd like you to have all those bright moments... all those family feelings
You know --everything it takes to make Mother's Day just what it should be. 
You deserve it." 
I wonder why I didn't send it. The probable reason was that I put it off too long, and she would not have received it until many days or weeks after Mother's Day. However, since it was from two or more, one of my sisters could have sent a card on my behalf. Or I may have misplaced it. I do not believe I changed my mind.

My mom was always a huge cheerleader for me and for the rest of her children. She did deserve to have this card, and many other words of praise.

In the years before 2015, I know that it was my habit to Skype with Mom at least once a week. So, if the card had been purchased before she had a stroke, I would have told her how much she meant to me. But I have the uncomfortable feeling that I bought this card while she was in a nursing home; it is  a brightly colored card that was meant to bring cheer to the receiver. The home was adequate, but neither bright nor pretty. While she was there, she could no longer see her television or computer monitor or even her children when we came to visit; but she could identify our voices. So I would not have been trying to Skype. One of the hardest  consequences of the stroke was that it effectively cutting off communication with Mom and three of her five children. She couldn't see or hear when we tried to call on my sister's iPad. There were many other issues: and she could not sit upright without support, she couldn't eat food unless it was pureed, she couldn't feed herself or look after her personal needs.  In other words, the quality of her life was minimal. She was now in the state of helplessness that each one of us experienced as babies.

Now I wish that I had sent the card anyway. It might have brightened her day. I know she looked forward to my sister's daily or twice-daily visits. I wish I had sent it anyway... even though she might have gotten it in June or July, at least she would have known that her most geographically distant daughter was thinking about her with gratitude and love.

There is never a better time than the present moment to send that card or make that phone call. 

I want all readers to remember that spiritually we are all doing the best we can, every moment of every day. If we had known better we would have done better. 

It does make me think about what matters to me most. If it really is family, then I could ask myself am I making connections with the other people I love? Am I sending the cards? Am I making the phone calls or am I making excuses?

Right now is the point of power and really the only time there is. Tomorrow is still a fantasy and yesterday is just a memory. As the Salutation to the Dawn continues,
"But today, well-lived, makes every yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well, therefore to this day."
The back of the unsent card reads:
To those who comfort with a mother's hand, we thank you.
To those who encourage with a mother's praise, we applaud you.
To those who love with and mother's heart, we honor you--
Not just on Mother's day...always!
The inside of the unsent card

Further in


Thinking of  my mom, Lela Eugenia Burrell Clark 

Lela Clark
December 19, 1919 to June 23, 2016