“Memory is a way of holding on to the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose.” —The Wonder Years
I remember that last visit just like yesterday. You and your dear son spent those few hours with me. We chatted, we laughed, we teased and we talked.
You also shared your struggles, yet still able to paint beautiful pictures of your dreams. Your faith and strength always a silent source of inspiration. But your generosity and selflessness I will always remember. Little did I know that barely 3-months later, I will be walking slowly behind what remains of you in a casket at Atan cemetry in Lagos. I sobbed quietly as I thought about all your dreams, the many gifts that left with you and the fierce love you had for your son.
You see, this mommy went home a bit too early. She was full of life, strong and had beautiful dreams for her tomorrow. She was a great teacher and would make complex things look so simple. Her creativity was something to behold and her head was always full of new/bold ideas. She would laugh out loud at certain times and let the tears flow freely at other times.
This mom had a heart full of love. She also gave lots of it too. She hugged a lot and used lots of loving words. She would always say to me, “Sweetheart, how are you today? Oh! how she adored her son and was so very protective of him. I watched her carry him in her bulging tummy. I joined my faith with her that night, as she labored to bring him forth into the world. I also recall the joy in her voice as we spoke after she had held him in her arms.
She always held him close to her heart. She cuddled him and carried him along as she pursued her dreams. I am certain that he must have felt the fierce strength and determination in his mother’s heart. She was a fighter and never one who gave up easily. She worked hard for a better life and believed in her future. She could move mountains and climb up valleys. Yes, I had seen her fight. But Alas! She chose to go home too early.
But, on one very faithful day, the 9th of November, 2011, this mother went back home to her heavenly father. She never said goodbye. I only remember her last words to me during a phone conversation, ‘I’m fine’. Often, I think of her son and how he is doing and I do hope that someday, he gets to know what an amazing human his mother was.
This mom went home a bit too early. I wish she stayed just a little longer. Many more memories to fill up her son’s heart. Many more ideas to birth and nurture. Many more gifts to bless the world with.
And it is my sincere prayer that your son becomes all that you wished and prayed for, even much more. I pray that he finds his voice and place in this crazy world. I pray that his gifts will find full expression in his lifetime. And I pray that your many prayers said and seeds sown will yield bountiful fruits in his life. May he grow up to love God and others just like you loved selflessly.
And just like my dear friend, many mommies went home a bit too early. Their songs became faint and their children are left with only memories. They took off too early leaving us with words and portraits of their goodness. Some fought hard, some grew too weak, others simply gave up while a few knew it was time to say goodbye. Some had lived, some had taught and others had created memories that will last their children for a lifetime.
And for you my dear mother who is still here and has this precious gift of life, you still have this time and moment to share, to bond, to love and create memories with your children. And as you do, also remember to say a prayer for those kids whose mommies went home a bit too early. I believe they are in a better place and God is watching over their children.
“What we once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose, for all that we love deeply becomes part of us.” – Helen Keller