May 11, 2012 by Kathy Ferguson Litton
Mother’s Day without my mother leaves me more profoundly aware of her impact on me. There are no more chances to say “thank you” or kiss her cheek. So I celebrate her with a lifetime of memories and a life indelibly marked by hers.
The last seven years of my mother’s life she lived with the devastation of a stroke. My strong, bright, witty mother diminished greatly. Talking was very difficult and she was no longer mobile. Yet she never stopped fighting to live and love. Her faith grew stronger even as her body only failed her more. For more than seven years we watched an incredibly strong, resilient woman accept a bitter road with grace and joy.
Last year on the day my mother would have been 76 I recalled what I had learned by being my mother’s daughter.
A God who forgives
The value of good pimento cheese recipe
Fresh vegetables grown in your own garden
The cold pack method of canning green beans
A good book
Strong work ethic
God’s strength in heartache
A fighting spirit in the midst of calamity
“Life is an Attitude” her mantra for nearly everything
Snappiness (her demeanor as described by her pastor at her funeral)
Dumpster diving before dumpsters were even invented
A beautifully set table
Delicious food prepared in your own kitchen
How to love your Husband
The best iced tea recipe in the state of Missouri
Healthy sense of humor
Being a St. Louis Cardinal fan
Gracious spirit and kind smile to her multitudes of caregivers
The proper use of Wicker's Barbeque Sauce
The Muny Opera and hot summer nights in St. Louis
The necessity and responsibility of the Church
Joy even in a wheelchair
Grace in a wheelchair
What Christ looks like in a woman’s life
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What have YOU learned by being your mother’s daughter?