As with everything I’ve done lately, it seems like this was intended for two weeks prior to when I actually accomplished it. On the one hand, it feels like David and I are moving constantly right now to accomplish everything that needs to be done, but on the other hand, it seems like nothing is getting accomplished. (That last statement isn’t actually true – we are getting TONS done – it just feels like no progress is being made.)
I wanted to post this back on Mother’s Day, which means that I’ve probably forgotten much of what I wanted to write. However, I didn’t want this particular post to fall by the wayside. Mother’s Day was so sweet this year. Even though my body is still quite busy with the development of our sweet little girl and she isn’t actually here yet, I received quite a few comments from friends and people at church saying “Happy Mother’s Day!” or, alternatively, “Happy Almost Mother’s Day!” It was so sweet! The best husband in the world even brought these tulips home for me to celebrate:
I love when he brings me flowers. He is a huge fan of color, so the bouquets he brings me are always bright and usually have multiple colors in them. I’m such a blessed woman to have such a sweet husband.
This Mother’s Day brought with it thoughts and ideas of what kind of Mom I want to be, and those thoughts led me straight to my Mom. I had (and have) a wonderful example of what a mother is supposed to be. Mom and I have such a close, loving relationship, and I couldn’t ask for a better one. I want to write down a few ways that she has influenced me and some of what we do when we are together.
Mom (and Dad!) showed me the importance of being involved in ministry:
Mom began running sound at our church years ago. I can’t remember when that even started. She has a natural talent for it and thoroughly enjoys it, and this was an awesome example for me. She found something she enjoyed doing and immersed herself in it, constantly learning and improving so that she could better serve our church. I know that more people know her, if not by name, then definitely by face, than she does them because she is at the church and serving God all the time. She’s also involved in the children’s ministry called AWANAs on Wednesday nights. She encouraged us to participate in church events when we were fairly young. In fact, she was already training me on the sound board at 12 and had abandoned (yes, Mom, I said ‘abandoned’) me in the youth room one Sunday when I was about 13. This was traumatic and I remember the day clearly. I even went searching for her when she didn’t show up! :-) It had to be done, though, and she was willing to put me through a little pain and terror so that I would finally take the reigns and just do it. I think involvement in ministry is so important for Christians; it provides accountability for attending church and is where people finally feel like they are a part of a family in the church. Mom (and Daddy!) made this clear to me not through telling me to get involved, but by actively showing me through the ministries they were and are involved in. [Sidenote: I actually think it's incredibly cool that Mom and I are both involved in the sound and children's ministries in our churches even though we are over 500 miles away from one another. This didn't happen because I was trying to copy what Mom does; I am naturally drawn to both of these ministries.]
Mom also showed me what it is to be a good wife:
I’ve always known that I wanted to have a relationship with someone like Mom and Dad have with each other. Mom has been outwardly encouraging as a wife for Daddy, praising his accomplishments and lifting him up when something hasn’t gone the way they planned. Mom and Dad both have their faults, but they work through disagreements together and strive to love each other on a daily basis. This relationship provided a stable home life for Kara and me to grow up in, and we knew that Mom and Dad were always a team. I desperately want my children to view David and me as a hard-working, loving team that always have each other’s backs.
Mom showed me what it meant to work hard:
Contrary to what this looks like, we were actually on one of her business runs for work and stopped off in Palo Duro Canyon to take pictures of the landscape. See her badge? There’s proof that we were working that day! It’s a much prettier picture than the sweaty two of us cleaning off dusty grocery store shelves. :-) Mom has been an awesome example of not only doing a job, but doing it well. When I was 17, I picked up some of the small jobs for her merchandising work after Daddy had heart surgery and she needed some help. I knew that since I was representing Mom and her work, I had to do the job in the way that she did it. I think this was a huge learning experience for me. I realized exactly what went in to every job she did and how she went the extra mile to make sure her customers were cared for. She wanted the end result to reflect her, and the stores appreciated her for it! When she finally quit last year, she had quite a few unhappy stores that did NOT want to see her leave. When Mom went into a job, she didn’t do it half-heartedly. She researched the work beforehand, prepared what she needed, and then put her all into making sure it looked good before she left. She didn’t go in and simply do the work that the company assigned; she went above and beyond. I’ve found myself doing the same thing in teaching and being a stay-at-home wife. It might take more time and definitely takes more work, but the end result shines and people appreciate you for it. I want to continue giving my all to the jobs that I do.
Mom (and Dad!) also taught me about giving back:
Mom and Dad hauled us with them when they would go give blood at the Blood Drives back home. This started well before we were allowed to give blood ourselves. By the time I turned 17 (the legal age), it seemed natural that this would be a way for me to give back to people around me. This isn’t the only way Mom taught me to serve, but it is ONE way. Mom and I started a ritual of going together to give blood, and we continue that now when we are able. We would have ‘races’ to see who could finish first, as if we could control that. There was one time that I got done really fast, went to the dining area to drink a Dr. Pepper, and was approached by a nurse who asked me if I was feeling well. I’m not sure I even responded, but she got another nurse to help me back to the chairs so they could lay me back. Mom said the next thing she knew, she heard a commotion and looked over to see the toes of my shoes pointed at the ceiling and the nurses trying to revive me on the floor. Evidently, that’s what I get for trying to beat her. :-) I’m so glad Mom taught me to serve the people around me, even if I don’t know them. I was eventually listed as a Pedi donor, which means my blood can go to help babies and young children! I think this is pretty cool.
Mom and I just have fun hanging out:
I need to insert something here regarding the first picture. We were on our way to Texas, the play in Palo Duro Canyon, when I took this picture of us. (It’s one of my favorites.) We actually had a good portion of the family with us: Mom, Dad, Kara, David, Grandpa Tom, and me. It wasn’t just Mom and me. Daddy is actually a big part of why we have gone to do cool things like this! He wanted Kara and me to experience “culture,” so he set up events like attending Stomp, going to Texas, and seeing Sammy Hagar in concert (that was a fluke that I got to go to that one). So, I get to give credit to Daddy for showing me it’s okay to splurge on fun, different stuff every once in a while, especially once kids are old enough to remember and enjoy it! I can’t credit Daddy with painting our toenails, though. If he had it his way, he might throw out all nail polish. He hates the smell. :-)
I had to include the last picture because it’s indicative of what happens every time I come home to visit. Plus, I just like the picture of Mom. Inevitably, Mom and I are up until the wee hours of the morning (think 3 a.m.) talking, watching shows, or working on projects together. We both seriously regret it the next day, but we both enjoy that time, too. I think Mom psychs herself up for it whenever she knows I’m coming! I enjoy that close relationship I have with her and am so glad that we are able to hang out like we do. I have fun with her!
I’m amazed at how my thoughts and actions already seem to be changing months before our sweet girl arrives. There have already been times of worry for her; I’m already doing things to protect and nurture her; I’ve already begun thinking about how my actions will shape her into the woman she will become. I want to be a great Mom. I want her to grow up knowing that she’s got someone that loves and cherishes her, and I want us to be as close as Mom and I are. I love you, Mom. Thank you for being such a wonderful example for me!
Daddy – Obviously, much of this post applies to you, as well! I love you BUNCHES and am so grateful for you. I feel just as close to you. This just happened to be a ‘Mom’ post. :-)