Lest We Forget
Mother’s Day is almost upon us. This is a day set aside to honor mothers. Not every woman is a mother, thus, not every woman is afforded the opportunity to celebrate this day as a mother. Perhaps the choice was not theirs. Perhaps it was. It is not an inconsequential decision. For whatever reason, they should still be celebrated for who they are, and I for one, choose to honor them as well.
I no longer have my mother with me today. My biological parents were killed in a tornado in 1946. For the first six years of my life, I enjoyed all the benefits of being an older sibling. I was well fed, clothed properly, maybe not exactly fashionable, but clean. I was treated well, had a bed to sleep in and as I recall, an ice cream cone every once in a while. To the best of my memory and from all accounts of my childhood, my mother was a wonderful mother. It was a good life, until tragedy struck this young family; a tornado destroyed all semblances of the J.C. Morrison family, killing my mother, father, brother, and an uncle. I was the only survivor.
As I write this, I have in my hand my 1st grade report card from 1946. It describes the academic grades for my first year in school. Just so you will know, my average grade for the year was an A-, but who is keeping score. However, the front of this card is not the story. On the back, there are lines for parents to sign after each six weeks period. And at the bottom, it says I was promoted to the second grade. The first two lines are signed by my mother, Mrs. J.C. (Mae B.) Morrison while the middle two lines are blank.
The last two lines are signed by my mother, Mrs. N.R. (“BB”) Robertson. Curiosity got you. yet? “BB”, as she was called, was Mae B.’s sister. She became my adopted mother. She was the loving, caring mother who raised me. Even in my rebellious times, she continued to love and care for me and she disciplined me, obviously. Ever have a peach limb across your bare legs? Trust me, that was love. That is what mothers do, love their children.
I am sure I must have been a handful at times. Recalling, a stupid decision I once made when I was thirty-seven years old, she flat out asked me, “Son, when are you going to grow up?” I was thirty-seven years old!
She has long passed from this life to her rewards. It is amazing how I never dwell on all the times we disagreed and the times I surely must have disappointed her. Yet her love for me never wavered. I think of all the people who no longer have the presence of a mother in their life. There surely must be good memories you can recall. I hope so. I am blessed to have had two mothers in my life. Mae B. and BB.
I choose to celebrate Mother’s Day, for both my mothers, for the mother of my children, for those who have given me grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and for my wife and her daughter, my stepdaughter.
I lose count of all the mothers I know, but mothers, know this, you are a gift from God. Lest We Forget, thank you, Father, for the mothers in my life.
Happy Mother’s Day.