Thursday, April 5, 2012

Gift of Grace

Yesterday was a milestone! It was the 14th anniversary of my mom's death and my 65th birthday. Now, even the federal government considers me old, although not old enough to pay out Social Security. Everyone assumes that the day must be sad for me since, of course, it brings up sad memories. Actually, in a sense, it's joyful for me because of a specific memory I'll always have.

Stan and I had gone out to dinner and to see Titanic on my 51st birthday. When we arrived home, my daughter Keri told me I had messages from several of my sisters wishing me a happy birthday but that they all sounded sad. Both she and Eric sensed something had happened to Grandmom who had been sick for a few months. Of course, their feelings were confirmed and I was clearly upset. Keri went to get me a glass of water and yelled for me to come into the kitchen. All I could think was, "What now"?

I had received a little plant, I think a type of violet, as a Christmas gift and it was sitting on the windowsill, looking pathetically neglected. I kept telling myself to dispose of it but hadn't gotten around to it.

When I walked into the kitchen to see what had grabbed Keri's attention so strongly, she pointed to the plant. First of all, Keri is not usually all that observant of home furnishing or plants so this had really struck her as incredible. The plant was totally transformed, with shiny green leaves and beautiful little purple flowers. No one had watered it or substituted a new healthy one in place of the poor little bedraggled specimen.

As I walked over to examine it, I clearly heard my mother's voice, "Happy Birthday, dear." She was still with us and always will be. Her name is Grace and she truly is a gift to all her family.

So, every year on my birthday, I smile because I know it will be a good day -- I'll receive a gift of Grace in one form or another. This year's miracle was that I received cards from my sisters on time, possibly the first time ever. I'm often guilty of that too; we have a family of procrastinators.

I wish you a happy Easter and hope you will receive much love and grace.