Follow by Email

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Little Mother’s Day Story from Long Ago

Since Mother’s Day is just around the bend I thought I’d give a shout out to my mom, Mrs. Twyla J. Smith who I love, love, love so much!
Everyone has reasons for saying why their mom is sooooo special. And I have mine.
My mom is really my step mom. My birth mom passed away way back in 1974 when I was just 1. My sister was 3. My mom was 9 months pregnant, both she and the baby could not be saved and were buried together. My dad had just returned from his third tour in Vietnam, having served bravely but returning broken as many did. He is 100% disabled.
When I was 3 my dad married Twyla. She raised my sister and me as if we were her own, never once calling us “step kids” or treating us unfairly. She chose to not have children, later saying she did not want to take away from what my sister and I had, but I never knew her secret fear of my sister and me not “accepting” her as “mom”.
I think it became clear when I was about 8 on a Mother’s Day Sunday while sitting in church next to mom. My ears perked up when I heard the Pastor say that they had a special treat in store and for all the mom’s to come to the front and pick up a plant in their honor. I watched as all the moms made their way to the front but my mom didn’t move, I was confused, why wasn’t she going to get her plant? I waited a little longer, watching as the line of ladies got shorter and shorter and still my mom did not get up to go get her plant. Why was she not going up there to get her plant?
Now this church was a family church, my family had been going to it for some time. In fact, my birth mom had been a member, and it was the same church where her funeral was held. My family “story” was well told there.  But everyone knew and loved Twyla; they knew that she loved my sister and me. They knew that she was raising us girls as her own, and they loved and respected her for that.
But back on the pew I was getting restless and anxious; obviously I needed to take this matter into my own hands. I stood up, took mom’s hand in my own little one, led her down the pew and down the aisle to the front of the church, “It’s Mother’s Day, Momma, you need to pick out your plant,” I said as we stood in front of the few remaining plants. By now she was crying, as well as most of the congregation, but one thing was crystal clear to her in that moment, in this little girl’s eyes she was “mom”.
Do you have a story you’d like to share? I’d love to hear it!