In Tribute

by Daisy on 06/02/2015

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Early Saturday morning, a week ago, my beloved mother passed away at the age of 83.

While we are heartbroken, this is also a time of loving reflection on her life and her impact on her family.

A hallmark of my mother’s life was her deep adoration for my father. Indeed, the highest form of praise she could give any of her children was the statement: “You are so much like your daddy.”

She was generous with these favorable comparisons. deserved or not. They were usually bestowed after one of us had fixed something, built something, grown something,  or done something she thought was clever. At these times she would shake her head with wonder and explain that she simply didn’t know how we did it, and that she could never do anything like that herself.

Such humility was another hallmark of hers. It wasn’t false humility, but an honest marvel at others’ skill, and little regard for her own abilities. They were, however, many; our mother was an encourager, our greatest fan, a true believer in her children’s potential, and an example of kindness and gentleness.

She encouraged my creativity by letting me draw on a designated wall in our house and enrolling me in pottery classes. She let me play in the mud and run through the fields and woods around our house. She showed me the beauty of the unprepossessing when she begged my father not to mow until the dandelions and fleabane in the front yard had stopped blooming.

She took me to a nearby abandoned orchard to glean pears and showed me how to make them into golden jars of jam. She sat me on the kitchen countertop and let me make a mess in the flour while she baked. She took me down the fencerows of country roads and showed me how to pick sumac and make it into pink “lemonade.” She taught me to boil sassafras roots into a sweet tea.

She sent me to school with whole wheat sandwiches and fruit while everyone else around me was eating Wonder Bread and potato chips. She taught me to sew, and didn’t bat an eye when I made shapeless calico dresses and wore them to wander the town barefoot with my nose stuck in an old novel. She often collected me early from school to take me with her to her part-time job as a country librarian where we sat quietly together reading stacks and stacks of books.

I don’t know what the word is for the opposite of ‘center of attention,’ but whatever it is, my mother was it. She reflected light, not absorbed it. It was all about us, never about her, and that was the way she liked it. We will miss her every day, but she will continue to bring us joy every day as well.

Mom never caught on to the computer age, so she never read this blog. However, it’s fair to say she is the reason for everything I do to contribute to it, and that’s the reason why I wanted to say these few, inadequate words about her.

My mother wouldn’t consider it to be a compliment, and I know I don’t deserve it, but one day maybe someone in a particularly generous (or delusional) mood might tell me, “You’re so much like your mother.”

And I will treasure it.



{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Kim June 2, 2015 at 8:19 am

A touching and beautiful tribute. I think there are no greater words that can be said for a parent than “I want to be like you.” Your mother sounds like the kind of woman *I* would like to be, and reading about her (this woman I have never known nor met) has given me such a feeling of warmth…I can’t explain it. Your family was fortunate to have and love her.

Deborah June 2, 2015 at 8:41 am

I’m so sorry for your loss. It is hard to lose a parent. I lost my Mom in November of 2007. What got me through the worst time was to know she was in a happier and better place. And second, I made a scrapbook with all the pictures I had of her. My Dad died before I was born. Again, you have my most sincer sympathy. May God see you through this and strengthen your faith in Him.

Melynda@suchabusybackyard June 2, 2015 at 8:43 am

I think you are just like your mom, and becoming more so each day. Take care.

Amber, Head Pixie (@PixiesPocket) June 2, 2015 at 10:29 am

My condolences on your loss. What a wonderful woman your mother was, and your love and respect for her is quite tangible in your words. Ease to you and your loved ones.

Adebola Fajimolu June 2, 2015 at 4:40 pm

Sorry for your loss. You are already like your mother in that you took time out to help and educate people on your blog. May she rest in peace.

karen hornsten June 3, 2015 at 4:33 am

you are beautiful, just like your mom. i was touched to read your tribute and am sorry for the loss of your mom. you are dear…just like your mom.

Nancy Wolff June 3, 2015 at 4:52 am

What a beautiful tribute. I think you are much like your mom from reading your blog. Loosing a parent is hard, loosing a mom is like loosing a piece of your heart. Allow yourself time to grieve. I lost my mom a year ago and it is still hard.

Meridith Murray June 3, 2015 at 5:02 am

What a lovely and loving tribute. My mother died in August of 2007. We had a small graveside service, and I was elected by my brothers to speak. Here is what I said: “I am a huge Harry Potter fan, but I did not have to read Harry Potter to know the power and the magic of a mother’s love.” There is indeed magic, and we are charged with passing it on. And part of the magic is that it never ends! May you find comfort in your loss and strength in the love she bestowed on you.

Theresa Leach June 3, 2015 at 5:09 am

What a beautiful Tribute!

Your mother accomplished what all mothers dream to accomplish.
That our children will recognize that we love them and did our very best. That they love and respect their dad who work so many hours of the days so that mom could be with them. That we try to teach our children the things that we feel are important especially that School is a must.
The memories in your heart are so strong that your mom will always be part of your heart, remember you were the only one who knew the sound of her hearbeat on the inside. Her love to you will always be with you.

Robin June 3, 2015 at 6:01 am

So sweet! My grandmother was exactly like this. I still miss after 25+ years. I know you are so thankful to have had such a mother!

Cat June 3, 2015 at 6:20 am

I am so sorry for your loss. I know how it feels to loose someone so dear as I have lost both my mother and her mother. (I never knew my dad’s mother, she passed when I was a baby.)

What a beautiful lady! She sounds just like my grandmother. From the tribute you give your mother, I know that you are just like her. Everything you write about came from both your mom and dad. They would be very proud of you to know that you follow in their footsteps.

May God bring you Great Comfort and ease your mourning. <3

Lena R June 3, 2015 at 6:36 am

So sorry for your loss. Thank you so much for writing and sharing this beautiful tribute. You are teaching so many, passing on the flame of the lifestyle you inherited and made your own: whole wheat, golden jars of jam, baking, flour messes, pick sumac, lemonade, sassafras, pink tea, and sharing it all with the kids.

Beth V June 3, 2015 at 7:07 am

What a beautiful tribute to your mother. Thank you for sharing her with us.

Ronda June 3, 2015 at 7:31 am

I am sorry for your great loss. Thank you for writing about your love and admiration for her in such beautifully written words! This touched me deeply, partly because it so accurately depicts my own mother. I’ve said the same statement many times over the years about what a wonderful thing it would be to be able to be like her.
Thank you for sharing on your blog!

Claire June 3, 2015 at 9:04 am

Awww. Very touching (this almost made me cry). Thanks for sharing. Now I’m going to hug my Mom even more the next time I see her. 🙂

BrownThumbMama June 3, 2015 at 10:33 am

Sending you love and light.

Naomi June 3, 2015 at 3:54 pm

Your tribute to your beautiful mother has brought tears to my eyes. There are no words to say what I feel in my heart for such a woman. All the previous comments here and more! My own mother is 86 years old and I’m so glad I still have her to treasure, though she is becoming more and more feeble. Thank you for sharing that very large piece of your heart with all of us, and causing us to remember again how wonderful our mothers were, and are.

Sharon Helmsteadt June 4, 2015 at 3:22 am

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.. What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful Mother.. You were blessed to have her. Much love to you and yours!

Cinnamon Vogue June 4, 2015 at 2:42 pm

My condolences on the passing away of your mother. She was stunningly beautiful both outside and inside from what I can see and read. You are indeed lucky to have had such a mother. Daisy your tribute to her was even more heart warming. Humility is a trait I particularly admire. We will grieve with you during this sad time.

Terry June 4, 2015 at 3:09 pm

My condolences. What a beautiful picture. Full of light and love. Beautiful sentiments.

Donna Hamburgur June 4, 2015 at 4:03 pm

Sorry for your loss. Your mother was a beautiful lady. You are so fortunate to have had such a wonderful mom.

Helen June 5, 2015 at 2:01 am

The comments that Kim left on 6/2/15 are my thoughts exactly. Your words often make me feel like an extended family member. My sympathy…it is hard to know that you are without parents.

Abby June 6, 2015 at 11:30 am

That was a very sweet and touching tribute to your mother. My sympathy to you and your family.

Christy Edwards June 9, 2015 at 8:57 pm

I just love this. I could read and reread and still be encouraged! I’m so thankful to have met your precious family!

jeannine nye November 4, 2015 at 3:41 pm

What a gentle sincere post on your darling mother, who really seems to have been one in a million… the way you describe her with such heart, is a joy to read. All mothers are very special to us, but you have painted a picture of a truly lovely and loving person, and I think its wonderful that you shared that with us all.. bless you for sharing.

Daisy November 4, 2015 at 6:23 pm

jeannine nye–Thank you, Jeannine. I’m glad it shows through. It was a great loss, but she gave us the tools to cope with her passing, another gift. Blessings to you.

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