Tag: Mom

Strong in the Broken Places… A Birthday Tribute to my Mom

She loved you before she even knew you.

And from the moment you met in person, it was all over for her.  

She’s sacrificed her own possibilities for the chance that you could have, do and become more. She hurts when you hurt. She hopes when you can’t find hope. She dreams bigger dreams for you than you’ve ever dreamed for yourself.

And she’s convinced you’re worthy of it all…because you’re special… to her you always have been.

Her love is beautifully irrational.  She looks beyond your faults and flaws and sees the very best version of you. She believes that’s who you are.

If belief alone could get you there, she’d hand-deliver you to your destiny.

It’s all because of a woman we call MOM.

Today is my Mom’s birthday. It’s a special day.

Truly, a mother’s love and influence are among the most powerful things a person could ever find in this world.  If you doubt it, compare notes with someone who no longer has their Mom – or someone who never had her to begin with.

For better or worse, no one shapes our lives more than our mothers because they do it from the inside out.  We find their fingerprints on everything – from our grandest deeds to our most tucked away thoughts.

And she was always there for me – and for my brother and my sister (and for many others). Always. Ma, Mom, Mommy. She took this role very seriously and never wavered.  No matter what.

So I will do my best today to say, “Thank you, Mom. I want you to know that I know there’s no way I’d be who I am – or where I am – without you.”

I have said it before and I will say it to my dying breath…  any good quality that I show in my life is directly given to me by my mother.  I have written about her before (click here to read)  in my post called “Confessions of a Momma’s Boy”.  

Hemingway once wrote: “The world breaks everyone, and afterward many are strong at the broken places.”

Hemmingway 2My mother was one of those people who healed stronger in the broken places. Despite great obstacles she bounced back repeatedly: an extremely difficult childhood, choices she shouldn’t have had to make at such an early life, scant financial resources, losing a child at thirty-nine, losing her dearest friend (Leta Chandler) and I could add many more examples of things my mom endured but came out stronger and better on the other side.

My mother is a petite woman, but there is nothing small about her legacy, or the impact she has had on others.  It is a strong, beautiful, vibrant, legacy.

So as I sit here and think of the influence of my mother I want to share a few of her traits that I am most grateful for…

Generous, kind, loving, sweet, caring, honest, fastidious, brave, strong, energetic, resilient, thoughtful, hopeful, selfless. My mother possessed all of these qualities for sure.  But if I had to put it to one word  it would be…


In today’s society this word has much less meaning than it did in the past, but this single word describes my mother best.

A child and mother’s life is deeply connected. There is this love that a mother feels for her child. Mothers carry their young and take care of them until they become adults. Mothers make sure that their children are safe and happy. Mothers sacrifice their own happiness just for the wellness of their children.

My mother sacrificed her life for her children.

I am humbled when I think of all that she sacrificed for me.  Being thankful  seems trite but it truly is what I feel.

Thank you Mom for giving me the freedom and space to dream.

Thank you for creating order in our house despite the disorder that you tried to shield us from.

Thank you for pushing me to go to college even when everyone told me I wouldn’t make it.  Though you never had tIMG_0247he chance to go… you are still the smartest person I know.

Thank you for allowing me to disagree with you when we have our “discussions”.  I guess that is just other ways I am like you… strong in principle and knowing what you believe and not being afraid to defend it… even if it’s not popular or easy.

Thank you for showing me how to be a real friend. Thank you for teaching me how to be compassionate and forgiving. Thank you for telling me you loved me every time we see each other and every time before we hang up the phone.

Thank you for being strong in the broken places.

Thank you Mom, you are my rock, my anchor, and my one true North.

I Love You and Happy Birthday Mom!!



Happy Thanksgiving

It snowed a little today.

The first true sign of winter and the perfect beginning to the holiday season.

I really enjoy the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Happy-ThanksgivingWhen I was a kid, I loved it because my Mom would make every single thing I loved to eat all at one time. But the older I get, the more I appreciate the exercise of deliberately slowing myself down enough to consider how truly incredible life is – and to give thanks for it all.

I have a great job.  I’m so grateful for it. My bills are paid and there’s a little left over…thank you.

My wife and I are healthy and so are our kids and our grandchildren. May we never take that for granted.

I find it easy to say thank you to my Savior Jesus Christ.  There isn’t a day that passes that I don’t thank Him for the salvation He provided on the Cross of Calvary. 

However, I sometimes lose focus on all the people who are part of my life. I think about work friends and people who have contributed to my life. At times, I find myself taking them all for granted.

So this Thanksgiving I want to turn my head and heart to the people who fill my life.  I want to thank those that have walked this road of life with me. I want to thank those that have shared these days with me.

Mentors and protégés. Old friends and new.

So, with a heart that’s full of thanks, I didn’t want to let the holiday pass by without thanking you, my friends, for all that you’ve contributed into my life.

If you’ve ever made me laugh so hard you made me forget for a moment that I’m an adult or the problems in this life…Thank you.

If you’ve held my feet to the fire, kept me accountable, reminding me that I am not perfect and sometimes I am wrong… Thank you.

If I’ve ever forgotten my problems in your presence because you have taken them on as your own in prayer… Thank you.

If you’ve trusted me with your secrets and made me feel safe enough to share mine… Thank you.

If you could make a list of my weaknesses and failures, but don’t… Thank you.

If you tell me the truth, even when I don’t want to hear it… Thank you.

If you encourage me even though I shouldn’t need it… Thank you.

If you’ve forgiven me at least once… Thank you.

If you’ve ever taught me what I didn’t know, given me a shot when I hadn’t earned it, or guided me when I felt lost… Thank you.

If you’ve shared with me the benefit of your hard work or challenged me to think beyond myself or this day… Thank you.

If you say nice things about me behind my back… Thank you.

If you see something good in me that I can’t quite make out for myself just yet…Thank you.

I’m grateful for you. Not just the regular “let’s hurry up and eat” kind of grateful. I’m profoundly thankful for you.

As I consider my many blessings, I count you all among the greatest of them all.

For old friends who’ve left an indelible mark that can’t be erased by time or distance, and new ones that carry a key to a door that’s been locked to me.

For friends who feel like family, and family I’d choose as friends, I’m grateful and keenly aware of how different life would be – and I would be – without you in it.

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!!!