Rose of Sharon

This poem is dedicated to the loving memory and everlasting legacy of my mom.

When a mother needs rest

God knows what is best

When a mother has fears

He is the one who hears

When a mother has doubt

He reminds her that she was chosen by Him to nurture the precious life in her care

When a mother loses her way

He illuminates her path

When a mother loses hope

He is her Lily in the Valley

He is the only one who can separate mother and child

Yet only doing so in the flesh

He weeps for her children’s broken heart

Knowing that they often forget

Understanding that in times of grief we don’t realize how much love grows unendingly

Only He can care for a life so well lived and cherished as a mother

She is now safe in his care

A beautiful Angel in the Spirit world

She is everywhere

“I am a rose of Sharon, a lily of the valleys.”

A butterfly free from the spiderwebs

I’m about to board a plane today that is not Chicago-bound. I will not be handling any one else’s affairs on this trip. No work. No decisions beyond normal adulting and common sense practices. I’m looking forward to seeing my friends and spending time with their beautiful family. I’m excited to visit a city that I’ve never experienced. I’m curious and expectant.

Dare I say I feel somewhat vulnerable. There’s no itinerary chock full of have tos. I’ve had too many have tos this past year. I’m getting out of dodge for my own sake and quite possibly my own sanity. The word fun seems like an abstract concept lately. I would like to become reacquainted with fun.

As I write, I overhear a gate agent welcome passengers to board a flight (ironically) to Chicago. I will not be answering her call today. I’m going in a different direction now.

It feels good to begin a new chapter. Although these aren’t the verses I would have chosen to write. Life is about the acceptance of things we do not always understand. Our lack of understanding doesn’t negate the existence of the truth. We are all on a journey. We can only pray for safe travels coupled with grace along the way.

I’m headed in a new direction today. One full of new destinations and reasons to keep traveling. I am an explorer who is moving onward. I’m out of my comfort zone and you know what?

It sure feels good.

Look Mom, I did it!

Hi Mom,

I miss you so much. I would ask you how you are doing but I know that because you’re with God, you are excellent!

Well, today is the day. Today marks my 25th work anniversary. Isn’t this crazy? Do you remember when you came into my bedroom to “remind me” about attending the information job session at O’Hare? Remember when I told you that I “forgot” about it, as my reason for not going? And remember when me you turned on your heels, grabbed the Chicago Tribune ad, and read aloud there was another session…in Buffalo Grove.

“Where is Buffalo Grove?”, I asked. To which you gave me a map (an actual map), along with your Cellular One cell phone and told me to figure it out.

What?

I tried to come up with all kinds of excuses. Like, I was waiting on the Chicago Sun-Times to call me back about that editorial job that was basically promised to me a week earlier. Quick sidebar: I’m still waiting on that callback.

I didn’t see the big picture but clearly you did. You understood what I wanted, while knowing what I needed. You always wanted me to be a self-sufficient woman. One who has her own money, resources and agency. You always cautioned me to depend on myself “because Man may fail you.”

I have been on an exhilarating ride filled with opportunity, tough times, promotions, relocations. I have met people who have changed my life beautifully. Some of my wildest dreams have been fulfilled. All because I was obedient. And because I had you for a Mom to guide me. You knew that one day would be today. You knew that one day you would have to go home, and I would have to find my way in the world. You wanted to be sure that I was prepared. Not for the void that is now as much a part of me as my own skin; you wanted to show me how to live. To live well. To explore the infinite possibilities available to me. To live my life fully. To be unabashedly brilliant. Just like you.

Thank you Mom for giving me all that you had so selflessly and lovingly. I will honor your legacy every day of my life.