As my girls and I made plans for Mother’s Day, I glanced at the photo under glass on my desk, family gathered around my Mom. Her sweet smile. The familiar ache built in my chest, pulling me into the dark place, wishing I could have one more Mother’s Day to shower love on her.
Then I realized that our little brother, Mac, who drowned when he was three, is in heaven celebrating with her.
And she is there with her dear mother, celebrating the life of a true servant-hearted woman.
And my grandmother, Eleanor, is celebrating with her mother, Maria, who died when Grandmom was a girl.
And Maria is celebrating with her mother from her native Switzerland that she fled during an Anabaptist persecution.
That’s as far back as I know family history on Mom’s side.
Enough to give me perspective.
Would I really want to drag Mom back to this little world, when so much has been opened up to her? So much joy. So much celebration. So much connection. So much life.
I stroke the face in the picture, say ‘I love you’ again, and release her into the hands of Love who holds her forever.
Real love is like that, isn’t it? Loving, holding, and then releasing when necessary.
For the first time, I am truly ready to pick up the mantle my brother offered after Mom’s funeral—the matriarch of the family.
To continue to hold them all up in prayer, no matter how large the family grows.
To rejoice in their accomplishments and weep with their pain.
And to smile when my family is gathered around me.
The circle goes on.
So good. So good.