So this post is not going to be anything profound. I have started and re-started it, to be honest. I have a thought, then my mind jumps to something else, and not much seems conclusive. But I love to write, so I want to post things, even if they are just some of my ramblings.
I am approaching the 2 year date of having lost my mom. With that significant date comes a lot of memories. Some of those memories go all the way back to childhood and just thinking about my mom and who she was. Some of those memories are of her last days. So I thought I'd share a few of
"Rachael's Ramblings", which are , in essence, just the thoughts jumbling through my head.
-I've been in such deep thought lately about life in general that it has caused me just to stop and say "Be still". Psalm 46 says "Be still and know that I am God." I've been trying to be still lately, and that is not always easy. I don't sit still very well. However, in all of that, I have remembered some neat things. Mom was a busy woman. She was a stay at home mom my whole life. She always took such care of everything, though. We actually grew up eating our breakfasts and dinners together. (We called it supper). Eating breakfast together was special. Dad was on the go all day, and sometimes he'd even been out to work before breakfast, and came in to sit with us before we went off to school. Mom had the table set, and breakfast hot and ready (when it was a not cereal), and she'd be found in her office, Bible in front of her, ready to go for her day. That was a picture of taking time to be still in the midst of chaos with the 5 of us she had to feed at 7 am.
- I have sometimes struggled with my role in life at this point- or should I say "roles"- employee, daughter, wife, mom, and last but not least, "me". There were times mom and I would talk about this before she passed away. Her words ring with me often still. I am my worst critic. Mom was my strongest supporter. I would often say (and to be honest, still do) that I could never be as good of a mom as she (was), or as good of a wife. Mom would always gently remind me that we aren't supposed to measure ourselves against others. She would also remind me that my life was very different from what hers was, so my "givings" to all the roles in life would look different. I still have to remind myself of those things many days, and in the process, I am working on being less of a critic.
- Provision. This has been on my mind a lot recently. A childhood friend of mine and I were talking the other day. We grew up next door to each other. We were talking about how life was so simple growing up. But we talked about how that never bothered us, and it is really neat to now, as adults, look back on that and understand the provisions God gave us. My mom was not a worrier. She always communicated sucha trust in God to provide for what we needed. We often times had very little, but it never bothered me. We wore hand me downs, we ate odd meals sometimes, we ate a lot of hamburger and steak and pork (and to some that may sound luxurious, but growing up on a farm made it so it was more of a provision than a luxury or enjoyment. To this day, my sister and I still don't like steak!). But God always provided. Mom stayed home, and God provided for our entire family all the time. Now that I'm older and I've learned some of the stories of how tight our family was, it holds even more meaning-I couldn't totallly appreciate it then. Sometimes, when mom did do things-like babysit-she wouldn't take money because the parent was tight and so mom said no. Or dad told a renter to not worry about paying sometimes, he said "God will provide", and He always did. We never were without what we needed. And we had a lot of fun. Life was more simple. It was fun, too. We didn't need the latest clothes or jewelry or car (mom and dad totally drove the cars to their deaths...literally the car would give out. One car lasted around 15 years for them! ) We lived on a pig farm with around 1000 pigs, plus dad farmed around 80 acres. Farmers didn't make a lot. But God always provided.
-Fun. Mom made almost everything fun. She quizzed me on spelling words with games; We played games; We made up games; She told stories; She sang songs to make things fun; She laughed a lot; She was there for every event just about-every silly soccer game I played (wow, I was horrible at soccer, too!...and while I'm at it, let's say she was also at my b.ball games, at which I was also awful!) she was at all my plays, she came to all my concerts, and even the football games just to watch me play my saxophone at half time. She was fun. I hope to instill some great memories with my kids, too.
She was also there for every county fair-until I was 13, I showed pigs at the county fair. I was even the county pork princess one year! She packed our lunches for the fair to save us money, and she would get up early to get us to the fairs.I remember one Christmas, we got a family gift of a VCR. I was around 11. We got the movie The Apple Dumpling Gang to go with that. We stayed up (because we opened on Christmas eve) watching that movie as a family and laughing til we were in tears. That was simple fun. She drove us everywhere. I never heard mom complain. If she did, it wasn't in front of us ever. (Wow, I can say I do not do that as a mom! ) I had such an amazing childhood, and a huge part of that was my mom.
In mom's last months, it was hard to watch her digress. It was a new role to take on. But even as I took on that role for a time, mom continued teaching me, just by her attitude. She never gave up. She fought hard. She taught me to laugh when I didn't feel like it. She taught me to keep going. She taught me to live one day at a time.