Day 131: May 11, 2014

Thankfulness for Mom

Duh. It’s Mother’s Day and everyone’s doin’ it.

I’ve been meditating for a while now this morning about my mom: memories, quirks, habits, sayings, how I remember my childhood with her and how our relationship is now as adults. She’s not on The Book of Faces (thank God) so I will be sending this directly to her this morning. Most of them won’t have meaning to anyone but her and I, so thanks for reading.

First of all, my mom was raised in a loving, hardworking home. And that was passed down to Lora and me. Nothing was taken for granted by my Grandma and Grandpa Wheelock, and they passed on a great heritage when they had her. They made their own clothes, farmed their land and sold their produce on the side of he road. It’s called a “Truck Farm” in case you didn’t know the term.

And wow. My mom has a green thumb. We had a huge garden growing up (in my little kid mind anyway) and she grew all kinds of things. She humored me by growing beets, which I love to this day. When I think of that taste, that smell, that color, I think of Jackie. She could can anything and made grape jelly for us from our vine that was delicious. She find joy in going out and weeding. I did not inherit that from her, obviously.

She worked (and still does) right along with my dad. We didn’t want for anything, yet they refused to give into us when our Wanter outweighed our Needer. When we wanted the latest Guess Jeans or Swatches, they made us work for the money it took. These things were not important in the scheme of life, and to this day, I am able to pass that value off to my own kids. Thank you, Mom, for showing us how to value the important things.

She made us beautiful clothing. I remember feeling cheated at times, feeling like “everyone else’s parents get them the latest fashion in clothing,” but the time she made me my Esprit blouse for Christmas (the kind with all the different colored silk cuffs and collar), I was the envy of every one of my classmates. She cared. And she showed it with her time and talents. She taught me to sew. She helped me make beautiful but simple prom dresses, and when she made all of my bridesmaid dresses in my favorite color for my wedding, along with the flower arrangements, I felt like the most blessed daughter in the world. Thank you, Mom.

She was very patient with me. It’s tough being a mom of two girls, with hormones and all that, but when I was mean to her (and I was very mean at times… which she has conveniently forgotten… God bless her), she would tell me that she loved me. Loved me? Even when I yelled running out of the house: “I hate you?” That is true love. Thank you, Mom, for loving me when I wasn’t very loving or respectful to you.

And the most beautiful thing about my mom: She has grown to accept who I am, even if she doesn’t agree with everything and how I think. She knows that part of loving someone is letting go and leaving them in God’s hands. I hear it in her words. I feel it in her hugs. And I feel it more so these days while dealing with Cancer and chemo treatments. I wrote about this last year, but I needed to copy and paste it here again. It is one of the most touching memories I have of her and it is worth repeating.

When I was sobbing uncontrollably in bed by myself (and trying to be quiet about it in the middle of the night) the first time I had cancer 3 years ago, feeling terrified and alone after my cancer diagnosis, she heard me. A mom has super-sonic hearing, no? She came to my room, just like she did when I was little, curled up beside me and held me. She showed her undying strength and love through her own ability as a mom to comfort her scared little girl. Only moms know how to do that. She held me for a long time. Mom came to stay many times during chemo that year and was tender and attentive. Just having her with me was enough to give me the strength I needed to make it through those horrible months. The fact that she spooned me while I cried in my bed was so touching. Mom, I love you beyond these simple words I am writing.

I know you well enough, Jackie, to be able to predict your reaction to this last statement. You will think: “I give all the glory to God.” And Mom, when I say you’re Wonder Woman and you passed that gene onto me, I mean it. And while you will humbly reflect on that and not want the credit, I want you to know that I appreciate you. I care for you. I love you.

Happy Mother’s Day, Jacalyn Lee Wheelock. I am so thankful that God chose me to be your daughter.

Love, Stylin’ in Homemade Clothes Made With a Mom’s Love

P.S. Isn’t Jackie so beautiful? Dad, you caught a good one in her.MomLoraMeWeddingDay

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