Monday, August 17, 2009
Oh what I would do to have her back for one moment
For me, this is the saddest day of the year. A day of heartache and pain…I remember her last day as if it were yesterday. Her loving family gathered around to say their good byes, my distraught dad overwhelmed with emotion, sitting by her bed willing her to get better or pass peacefully. Sitting by her bedside holding her hand as life left her body was more emotional for me than anything I have ever experienced. The year, the day, the hour are forever burned in my brain. Today, August 17, 2009 is the 10th anniversary of my mom’s death. Oh how I wish I could turn back the clock…turn back the clock and take her out to dinner one more time, or send her flowers, or tell her how much I love her…but I can’t because she is gone. I would give it all up for one more chance…one more opportunity.
Looking back there were so many times that I took my mom for granted, so many times I blew off her advice or rolled my eyes at her. I don’t know, I guess I always assumed she would be there for me through all of the ups and downs in my life, worrying about me, caring for me. But one horrible day she was gone, that was it and I was heartsick…It was to late, to late to say the words I wanted to say to her for so many years …to late to do the things I wanted to do with her…Oh what I wouldn’t do to have her back again, if only to say the things I never got the chance to say.
I was going through some things that I had kept over the years that my mom had given me. In this box was a handwritten note from her that she gave me on graduation day. She had found this list in an article she was reading and wanted to make sure that these were the things that I would one day share with my kids. To this day I cherish this list and want to share it with you as well. I only hope that one day my kids will cherish these words as much as I do today.
I gave you life, but can’t live it for you.
I can give you directions, but I can’t be there to lead you.
I can allow you freedom, but can’t account for it.
I can teach you right from wrong, but I can’t decide for you.
I can offer you advice, but I can’t accept it for you.
I can give you love, but I can’t force it upon you.
I can teach you to share, but I can’t make you unselfish.
I can teach you respect, but I can’t force you to show it in return.
I can advise you about friends, but I can’t choose them for you.
I can tell you about drinking, but I can’t say “no” for you.
I can warn you about drugs, but I can’t prevent you from using them.
I can tell you about lofty goals, but I can’t achieve them for you.
I can teach you about kindness, but I can’t force you to be gracious.
I can pray for you, but I can’t make you walk with God.
I can tell you how to live, but I can’t give you eternal life.
So my advice today…no matter how old you are, if you are still lucky enough to have your mom in your life…Tell her how much you love her. Tell her how much you respect her. Tell her how much you appreciate her. Say it…show it…EVERYDAY…because some day it may be to late.