Wednesday, May 16, 2018

When Mother’s Day Becomes Real

Written by  Fr. David Tumback

I realized many, many years ago that all of those beautiful creations that we, as children, made for Mom for Mother’s Day never really survived much past, say 10 days, after the event. Maybe I dreamed that somewhere my Mom would have a hope chest cherishing and keeping all of those treasures. Now it was by no means a traumatic realization. In fact, most years my supposed “treasures” were about as artistic as, well, off-white paint. I knew in her heart Mom treasured the gifts and the efforts but she knew and I knew even more that my name wasn’t Van Gogh. 

And so countless Mother’s Days passed with phone calls and overly sweet Carlton cards and the annual Prayer over the Moms at the Mass. It’s the day, as a priest, you get more hugs than Christmas Eve. 

But this year was different. This year I had my Mom here to start the weekend. Friday evening I escorted her to “Stars on Ice.” Mom has been a huge fan of figure skating for a long time. I remember those days in the early 1970s as she watched the World Championships. You see, on occasion my Mom has an opinion. Figure skating brought out the best of her opinions whether it was the commentary of Johnny Esau, how Karen Magnuson and Toller Cranston always got robbed of marks, and how the skaters from the USSR needed someone to introduce colour to their outfits. 

And there it was. An evening with Mom as she experienced something she had always wanted. I enjoyed the show but I have to admit that I enjoyed watching Mom more as she was mesmerized by the performances. As an example, she wrung her hands when they built up for a jump and slowly exhaled when they landed it. She’s always worried about them landing jumps. Even a slight stumble by Elvis Stojko (not more than 10 feet from her) brought a look of great concern. 

It was a splendid evening and I felt privileged to be present as my Mom experienced something she’d always wished to see. 

And then came Mother’s Day and my heart was full knowing one of the injured Broncos received a couple of day passes to be home with his Mom - a gift so beautiful; an email from an adoptive Mom who was so happy that our Prayer for Moms at Church included birth mothers and adoptive mothers; a huge hug from a Mom who had just returned home from visiting her granddaughter whose cancer has returned; and an evening Mass and another Mom journeying with a daughter battling cancer. 

Yes my Mom loved the show but she’s a woman who deserved it. She’s had her difficult moments too. 

But it was the beauty and resiliency of all of the Moms that weekend that made this Mother’s Day the most real it has ever been. They say there is no love that compares to the love of a Mother. I’m grateful that I can say I truly believe that. 

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