(C) Allen Pearson
I've been wanting to write a special blog post in honor of my mother who passed away on February 10, 2011 for a few years now, but just haven't been able to pull something together. I loved my mother, we were very close, but writing about her hasn't been easy. I guess it's because she was so great that I didn't want to bore my readers with the details of the wonderful person she was!
A few weeks ago, I got to thinking about her again, more than normal as I usually think of her daily, but I was working in the garden which is something she loved to do and thoughts of her came to me.
My mom blessed me with the concept of enjoying the simple things in life. They can be, and often are, as much fun as stuff you have to pay money to do. She taught us to play outside, enjoy the outdoors, and be creative when we got bored with it. TV was off limits except for an hour a day and I had to share that with my younger brother- I got to choose a show to watch one day and he, the other. These days, I find myself enjoying the outdoors much more than being inside and especially watching TV. I can be outside enjoying nature's beauty forever to where most TV shows put me to sleep pretty quick.
The only regret I have about loosing my mother was not writing down some of her garden wisdom. I took the time to enjoy her while she was alive but I didn't think to write down what she suggested to do with a certain plant or what this plant is named or how to care for it -especially those that she gave me. When I garden now, I frequently think to call her and say, "Mom, what do I do with this?" Can't do that now- should have paid better attention when we planted it instead of rushing to get it done.
I have many garden memories of my mom- one of the funniest was when I bought some plants from the county's extension office. In order for the plants to reproduce and create the natural habitat that I wanted, I had to have a male and a female within close proximity of each other. So, how do you tell that on a plant? I looked at the plant, I went "Googled," and then called Mom. After explaining the situation in detail, I asked "Hey Mom, how do you tell if a plant is a male or female?" Her response was appropriate and funny, "Well, if you don't know- it's no wonder I don't have grandchildren!!" I was taken by surprise, but then we both laughed for the longest time.
Mom wasn't above being mischievous. I'd heard stories from her sister all my life. It really became evident when my father and I were working on a project of cleaning out the weeds and assorted other growing things from underneath the deck of my house. The house is about 20 years old- when we moved in, it looked like the area under the deck had never been cleaned out. Prior to our going under the deck, my mother showed me some turtles on sticks she'd bought me while they were traveling. I love turtles so she'd bought these for my garden. Wanting to know where I wanted them, I suggested somewhere around the deck would work great. Dad and I went under the deck and I warned him about possible snakes including rattlesnakes. He was surprised and concerned. Telling him what to do if he saw one, we proceeded. Then, we heard a noise. Oh my. I was just "warning" about rattlers. The snakes are in the area where we live but generally do not come into developed areas unless some kind of weather event or whatever causes them to do so. Dad asked if I see the snake, I said "no" do you? I was about to pass out from panic when I hear it again. I told Dad we might want to get out of here so we did. Just then, we heard it again and a laugh. The turtles my mother bought me made noises which sounded like a rattlesnake. We got out from underneath the deck and she was laughing hysterically. Covered in mud from head to toe, Dad and I, at first, weren't laughing.
(C) Allen Pearson
Though I miss my mom, she wasn't well when she passed away so I didn't want to cling onto her or keep her here with the suffering she had. I am thankful that as a young man, I took time to do stuff with my parents, to chat with mom on the phone from college and, after I graduated, from my apartment. She was thrilled when I got married, she was happy to have a daughter-in-law since she raised two boys. After I was married, I kept in touch with her though it was less than before, after all I had a wife now. Mom was welcome in our home and family. We had many laughs over the years and lessons learned.
Remember, take the time now, not later, to enjoy your mother. Not tomorrow. Today.
Thank you Lord for making me slow down to "smell the roses" and including enjoying my mother along the way through all the changes in life as a growing boy to a man with a wife and furry children. Bless those without their mom's today for whatever reasons that may be. If their mothers are still living and they are separated because of some trivial disagreement, unite them before it's too late. If their mothers are miles away, remind them to call their mothers and say "I love you." Bless the mothers today as they continue the task of raising in children in a time when it is most difficult to do so- give them guidance, love, and wisdom to do the tasks ahead. Amen.
Written in memory of my mother, Judy Pearson, June 1943 - February 2011.