Honoring Mama (a part of my Mother’s Day series)

May 27, 2013

me and mom1






That’s me…with my mom sometime in the early 70s!



I had planned to post this during my series of blogs on Mother’s Day week (how to celebrate Mother’s Day when mom is no longer on Earth); well, as grief would have it, I just couldn’t. I couldn’t bring myself to continue that emotional journey that particular week. So, this post never made it up. But, today I celebrate Mom’s 71st Birthday and I thought this would be a nice way to honor her and to encourage all of us who belong to this club. Happy Birthday, Mama!


Whoa…the big, bad wolf (that’s me) just had a melt down.
Yep, after saying how I felt after 7 years of saying good-bye to mom, posting to help others, reading your comments about how special she was and the recipes of hers that you still use…and then, enjoying a warm bath and reading the first chapter of a new Tyndale release (A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet by Sophie Hudson), I broke down.
Sophie, who is from the South, described her Mamaw and Papaw’s (I didn’t know that’s how you spell that! Awesome editorial team at Tyndale!) marriage, relationship, and eventually Mamaw’s death.


This is the cover of the book I was reading when I had my melt down. Sophie Hudson paints such a vivid picture of how they said good-bye to Mamaw that I couldn’t help but recall how my family said good-bye to Mom. I don’t know Sophie, but we have so much in common. Humanity! (more on that later)


Whoa…Sophie told this through the eyes of her 14-year-old self…right around the same age my oldest nephew was when his Mamaw (my mom) died.
Whoa…her cooking (uhm, if you had tasted Ernestine Washington’s cooking, you’d know what I mean…just about the best around Southern Louisiana for sure…she always wanted to be a home economics teacher and while she never did, she used all of that talent to bless her family and friends…and she actually retired as a nutrionist aid who helped mothers on the Women Infant and Children (WIC) program learn to cook nutritional meals…uhm, sounds like God gave her the desires of her heart…more on that another day!)
Whoa…mamaw sounded like the white version of my mom.
Whoa…I was supposed to be reading to unwind and catch a few more zzzzs before I get ready for the day.
Whoa…that’s how grief will do you; when you’re not thinking about it, when you’re feeling fine, when it’s a good day, a bad day, an uneventful day, a full day, it can hit you. Right smack in the middle of your heart.
So how do you go on?
Know that you will go on; someone how some way, you will. How else will you be able to honor your mom and her legacy. Surely she didn’t pour all that she had into you for you to die when she died.
Yes, grieve. Yes, cry. But go on. Live like your mom taught you to live; learn from the lessons she passed on—intentionally or inadvertently through the mistakes she made. Live as a woman or man who wants to honor mom through your life.
How I do it?
I pray (mom prayed a lot; I heard her pray out loud for her family every Sunday morning; it used to get on my nerves, but now I cherish the fact that I know exactly how and what my mama prayed for me…more on that another time too!)
I try to find balance (if I could send a letter to my mom 50 years prior to her death…I’d ask her to put herself first just a little bit more; exercise more, eat better, handle stress differently)…so I try to do those things myself in her honor.
I love my family and my friends. Mom loved us…unconditionally. When we messed up, I never felt judged; disciplined yes…but judged…no. She’s was that kind of person.
Mom taught me to love the Lord through her messages and most importantly through her life. I seek to do the same…what a difference having that anchor makes in times of trouble.

So, grieve my friend. But live too. Live like your mama taught you to!



How do you honor your mom?

By katara

I’m trying to use my love of writing and passion for keeping this journey real and relevant to help others navigate successfully and happily through life. It is a journey filled with ups and downs, potholls and mountaintops…but it does not have to be walked alone.

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  • Linda

    May 27, 2013 at 8:36 am

    Katara, Grief is so powerful, isn’t it? I like how it makes me remember the person and bring them alive again for a few moments. Thanks for sharing about your mom. Maybe we need some of those Southern Louisiana recipes at work?

  • Stephanie Rische

    May 27, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Your mom sounds like a wonderful woman. And I love your description of grief…so well put: “Whoa…that’s how grief will do you; when you’re not thinking about it, when you’re feeling fine, when it’s a good day, a bad day, an uneventful day, a full day, it can hit you. Right smack in the middle of your heart.”

  • Michele

    May 28, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Beautiful Katara. These thoughts are priceless.

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