Friday, May 18, 2012

Mothers Never Leave Us

Mothers Never Leave Us

Does anyone ever really remain free of delight when the warmth of May comes around each year? I, for one, consistently revel in its appearing. Among the many reasons for this is the forceful presence of my mother and Godmother (my mother’s sister) at this time. Both of these formative “Ammas” [wisdom women] died in May.

In 1983 (3 years after my mother’s death) I was invited by the pastor to give a few remarks at the Saturday and Sunday Eucharist in my home parish, St. Boniface church, Cold Spring MN. This invitation came because that year I was celebrating my 25th Jubilee as a Benedictine sister. I actually welcomed the opportunity to comment on how several parishioners were wonderful role models for me as I was growing up.

After having repeated the same remarks for the third and final time, I finally felt relaxed as the sun streamed in the large church window landing on my left cheek and shoulder. After the Eucharist, my cousin who was present, came to me and asked, “Did you feel the sun on you as you spoke?” I needed to admit that I had and its warmth felt so comforting. She responded, “That was your mother, she wanted you to know she was with you again today.” The flood of tears that followed her remark revealed again how terribly much I continued to miss her. However, almost immediately, the refrain of a popular John Denver song came into my mind.

Sunshine on my shoulder makes me happy.
Sunshine in my eyes can make me cry.
Sunshine on the water looks so lovely.
Sunshine almost always makes me high.

So now, all year round, whenever the sun warms my left cheek or shoulder I say, “Hi mom, I’m so glad you keep letting me know you’re with me. I love you too.”

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