I am a husband, father, son, brother, uncle and friend. I believe in sharing my talents and experiences by giving back to the community by giving my time to coaching, church and especially to the disability community. I truly believe that all men and women are created equally.
I only had my mom around for about 25 years. I get a lot of questions from my kids as to what my mom was like. As I have gotten older, I have realized how much my mom truly meant to me. Spencer is the one who asks the most questions about the end and while it is hard sometimes to explain cancer to an 8 year old. I almost feel as if I grew closer to my mom in the last few months of her life then I actually did the last 6 or 7 years. Probably because there was more quality time spent together, just the two of us.
My dad did remarry and Sue is great. She really takes interest in what is going on in our lives. My kids truly love her as a grandmother.
I was once asked this question: God went to your mom and said to her that he has plans to place a special child in her family and which one of her kids did she feel would be the best to handle the situation. Why would your mom have chosen you? I honestly can’t answer that question. 15 years ago, I probably would have been the last choice. My sister and brothers would all make great parents.
Some of the things that I do remember about my mom:
The first thing was her smile. She had a small gap in her teeth, like my daughter Madi does, and she always tilted her head.
I remember how important family was to her. She would always spend a considerable amount of time with her father in law, who was bed ridden with MS, when ever we would go to trheir house.
I remember her taking us to an ARC (http://www.thearc.org/NetCommunity/Page.aspx?pid=183) type facility to Christmas shop. The facility was on Kennedy Avenue near St James Church in Highland, IN.
I remember my mom as one of the most compassionate people I have ever known. She rarely had a cross word for anybody. This is something that I have learned being the parent of Tyler.
I remember that most of our big family vacations revolved around history. We did the Lincoln Heritage Trail. We camped in Southern Indiana, Kentucky and ended up in Illinois. We saw where Lincoln was born and raised and ended at his final resting place. We went to Mt Rushmore in 1976, I remember this because it was the Bicentenial and it was kind of a big deal. It has taken me this amount of time to truly appreciate these trips. As a kid, I was more into comic books and playing baseball in the summer then historical vacations.
Last summer we took a camping trip to Washington DC and it was great to see my kids enjoy touring The White House, US Capitol, Arlington National Cemetery and George Washington’s Home to name a few of the stops. On the last day we stopped at the Ford Theater, the place Lincoln was shot, we arrived after they closed, but how ironic that it took me back to my youth.
My mom was the one who stressed education. Boy, I wish I would have headed her advice more fully when I was younger.
I remember my mom doing whatever it took to keep the family together. She worked many different jobs. I remember she worked in a grocery store, she was a route manager for the local paper, she was a manager at Burger King and finally she worked as a receptionist in a doctor’s office.
I remember how much she looked forward to getting together with her girlfriends for “Club”. They would set up a Tripoloi mat and maybe play one hand of cards but spent most of the night bragging about her kids. We liked when the party was at our house, we had extra treats that we would sneak.
I remember her throwing me a surprise 16th and 21st birthday parties.
I remember driving her and her sister and step mother to the Hines VA Center to visit her father. I had just gotten my learners permit so I did not mind the hour drive.
I have a couple of letters that she wrote while I was on the verge of becoming a teenager. I have a letter she wrote me during my Senior Retreat. There has only been one other person to read this letter and that is my wife Angie
On Holy Thursday this year, the subject came up about Jesus and how he interacted with his disciples on those last days. While my mom realized that end was near, she wrote a letter to her family and friends. I read the note to my kids.
This Mothers Day, please make sure that you take the time with your mom if possible. Enjoy the time that you have together. Do not take anything for granted.
Happy Mother’s Day Ma