May 19, 2005

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Today is my Mom's birthday. I won't mention how old she is because she probably won't want that little tidbit shared with strangers (Mom is not the type to hide her age just wanting to be polite). My mother is my best friend. I love her dearly and she plays a significant role in my life. I have always been close to my mom and really only recall one time when we were at odds with each other. I was 16 and my parents and I had just moved across country from Illinois to California. I was glad to be leaving Illinois - I loved living there - but was at a place where constant peer pressure to do things I just didn't want to do was at an all time high. I was also struggling in school and really needed a change of pace and scene.

I had been praying for some time for God to move us - funny thing for a child to pray about - but we were a family that moved (4 times prior to this) and so it was not unheard of to have my dad tell us that we would be moving. We had lived in So. Suburbs of Chicago for 7 years, the longest we had lived anywhere in my 16 years of life. I was ready for a move and when my dad told the family, I knew it was of the Lord's doing.

Moving during high school can be traumatic. I didn't realize how much I would miss my friends and how out of place I would feel at a large metro high school. My former school had 500 students total and my new school had over 2500. Everything was different from the class schedules, the way kids dressed, the lunch menu. It was a hard adjustment and it took time for me to find my place.

My mother, Bless her, got me involved in a Youth group and just told me that I had to go. I didn't want to go and stomped and acted like a little spoiled child. She prevailed and I went. It changed my life. Not only did I met a group of kids who went to my school but almost over night I was given a circle of friends to hang with, go to the mall with, and see each day before, during and after school. I also took a deeper step of faith in Youth group. I was challenged to commit my life to the Lord and to walk and live daily for Him. I started to attend a school bible study fellowship group, read my Bible, prayer with more earnestness, and begin to trust God to care for my every day needs.

There was a short time between that Mom and I clashed. Mostly it was due to my hormones and my loneliness. Once I called on Jesus and began to trust Him for my happiness (rather than friends, family and things), my whole outlook changed.

Mom and I became friends.

My parents live down the road from us and we see them everyday. My mother calls me many times during the day, pops over to see us, brings us goodies (treats from the store) and generally makes herself a very big part of our life. She is a constant influence in my life and as I age and as she ages, I see my role in her life changing. My parents cannot do the things they once did. They are still very active but they just cannot do everything and go everywhere anymore. It takes more effort, they get tired, they need to rest. It is hard to watch your parent change like this because you want them to always be the way you remember them - usually when you were young. You want them to be vibrant, active, social, and the dominant force in your life. As life ebbs and flows, so do the days they have left. I don't like to think about it but the truth is that my parents have an unknown amount of days left on this earth. Both of them Love the Lord so I have no worries there but I don't want to think about the day when they will no longer be here. I want to cherish the days I have with them and enjoy our time together.

God knew what he was doing when he created Mothers. There is no substitution for a mom and they have the power to impact a child's life in so many ways. I thank my God for my mother and prayer for her daily. She is my best friend and I am so glad she is here to spend her days with me.

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