Wings As Eagles: This day, a year ago and years before that...

Saturday, September 15, 2007

This day, a year ago and years before that...

I actually meant to post this yesterday, but we were at the fair for most of the day and I didn't get to it, so here it is today.

September 14th is a special day, but perhaps more significant this year more than any other. September 14th is Mom's birthday. That one day in September that my sisters and I tried to do something special for Mom. That one day in September that Mom knew she would be one year older. That one day in September that I'm glad happened or I wouldn't be here!

Through the years, my sisters and I would always come up with something special for September 14th. Sometimes a little item we bought for her or maybe just a card (even e-cards!), but it would be something to show we loved and cared for Mom very much.

I'll never forget the first store-bought gift we ever bought for Mom (and it was probably the first thing we bought on our own, also!). I can't really remember how old we were (I'm sure I wasn't any older than 10 or 11), but Jena, Krissa and I decided to surprise Mom with a candle from Wal-Mart with one of her favorite scents. We always went shopping with Mom every week when she did her grocery shopping, so we knew it would be a challenge to get it at that time, but we didn't really have any other choice. We couldn't go shopping on our own and Dad was working for AT&T at the time and unable to take us. Do you know how hard it is to get a surprise gift for someone when they are right there??

I'm not quite sure which one of the three of us thought of the plan, but we had a plan in place. All three of us would leave Mom while she was shopping go look at the candles and decide on one to buy. Then I would go through the checkout and pay for it while Jena and Krissa found Mom and kept her distracted so she wouldn't spot me. The candle was small enough that I could stick it inside my jacket and it wouldn't be too noticeable after I paid for it. If I tried that now, I'm sure the Wal-Mart anti-theft cameras would catch me on tape and I'd probably be stopped for trying to stuff something in my jacket. :)

Anyway, that was the plan. And it worked well until...I was checking out and realized I didn't have enough money to pay for the candle. So I did the first thing that popped in my head and still to this day can't believe I actually did that! I told the clerk I would be right back. I ran back to where I knew Jena and Krissa were keeping Mom distracted, dug in Mom's purse that was in the front of her shopping cart, found her billfold for several quarters, ran back to the checkout aisle and finished paying for my item.

Were there a line of people waiting to checkout behind me? I don't know. Did the clerk think I was crazy? Probably or maybe she just felt sorry for me that I didn't quite know what I was doing. Who knows? But I managed to buy the candle, get it inside my jacket and get home without Mom having a clue what we did.

Mom treasured that candle for years, only burning a little bit of it at a time. It wasn't much; just a candle, but the thought and effort we put into getting it was special to her. I don't recall if we told her our escapade of getting it, but that made it all the more fun getting it for her and surprising her with it. I'll never forget that September 14th!

Last year at this time was quite different from years past. Krissa was in South Carolina at college and had sent Mom a card. Jena and I bought Mom some fresh flowers that we knew she would enjoy. Mom was not feeling well and we were still trying to deal with the shock of her diagnosis of MS only a little over a month ago. Her health was declining everyday and we couldn't understand why. Mom had days where she felt better than others and this was one of the worst. Little did we know on that September 14th that her next birthday would be spent pain-free, rejoicing in heaven.

Although this day brings sadness and some tears, it also brings great joy! I'm thankful for so many things. For the years she could spend with us. For the lessons she taught me; not only in school from first grade through high school, but also in daily life. For the encouragement she was to me when I was struggling. For the godly example of a wife and mother. And for most of all - leading me to a personal belief and trust in Jesus Christ!

Even though this day brings some sorrow where in past years has brought joy, I can choose to rejoice and be glad for the years spent with Mom. We have wonderful memories that will be remembered in years to come!


  1. I had forgotten about the candle...that WAS the first gift we ever got her that wasn't pulled out of her drawer at home! ;) Wonderful treasured memories!

  2. Aw! It sounds like you have some wonderful memories!!



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