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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Mother (as in maternal parent) (04/24/08)

TITLE: Marie
By Nancy Welsh


Marie Therese, my mother, a petite woman in her early 20's, looked so lovely in her wedding picture, wearing a simple white lace dress, with a scooped neck and long sleeves, her ebony hair softly waved,her brown eyes shining with happiness. What a wonderful day that must have been! My father, you see, was truly her world. The story goest that they met at Blood's Market in Malden; he was a meat cutter and she was a cashier. They both walked the same route, at least partway, and she timed her leaving the house so they would meet on the way to work. Dad's siblings passed this little story on for years, while everyone smiled indulgently, knowing how much in love they were.

Theirs was what one would call today an "old-fashioned" marriage, where the woman was utterly content to "make a home" for her man, who's role was definitely that of "bread-winner." Through the years, it was my mom's pleasure to provide a warm, attractive setting for Paul (my dad) to come home to; flowers and candles on the table and little seasonal touches were ordinary fare along with the daily meal. As time went on, my mom bore three childre, who completed her little family. Some of my fondest memories, growing up, were playing board games around the table on weekends, mom and dad sitting on the front porch toghere, while we played with the neighborhood children on the sidewalk. Going for a "Sunday drive," stopping for an occasional ice cream treat, was a weekly ritual. All very simple and innocent, but it was being "family" together that I think back on with such nostalgia.

When my mom was quite young, she lived in Canada for a while, and how I loved to hear how she "danced for the queen" in the ballet, "The Red Shoes." With my own innate love for dance and the theatre, I was proud to tell anyone who would listen that "my mother was a dancer!" How I would have loved to have seen her perform!

You could always tell when my mom was especially happy; she would sing her favorite songs. I grew up in the era of "Red Sails in the Sunset" and "Moonlight Bay." I think "In the Garden" was one she liked best.
She was, indeed, small of stature and I smile now when I think of how David, her son, towered over her as he grew. At times, just for fun, she would place a step-stool in front of him, climb up and give him a "little speech," while we all looked on laughing.

My mom said she never took her marriage for granted. It was something she worked on every day to make it better and better. She and my dad's closeness continued throughout their forty years together. I can still see them holding hands, long after we were all grown up.

My dad died much too young, he was my age now (67) and, in the ensuing years, my mother inspired me with her courage to continue living, in spite of the enormous hole in her life. She clung to her faith in her Lord, whom she developed an ever deeper relationship with. I remember when I was home visiting and was having a difficult struggle of one sort or another, she said: "Every morning when you get up, put your hand in the Lord's hand and He will bring you through the day." I'm sure that's exactly what she, herself, did. After dad died, mom and I drew closer. She lived nearby and didn't drive, so we spent a lot of time together. Shopping was her great pleasure, picking up Christmas gifts for everyone year-round. We took frequent excursions "off to the mall and lunch." I was happy when she was happy.

Mom spent much of the last year of her life in the hospital, very ill, but she never lost heart. "The good Lord has taken us through everything else, He'll take us through this, as well," she would say. It was very difficult watching her suffer. The day her Lord took her home, I released a helium balloon into the air outside the hospital. I picture her donning a brand-new healthy body AND her lace wedding dress to meet my dad, the love of her life, in the Great Beyond. As on her wedding day, for Marie, the "Dawn was (once again) breaking!"

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Member Comments
Member Date
Steff Clark05/01/08
I very much enjoyed this!Good story, you showed us how special your mother was to you. Keep writing!
God has some amazing things for you to do for him!
Yvonne Blake 05/02/08
What a wonderful tribute to your mother. I could see the love in your father and the whole family. Isn't it a blessing to know that we'll see them again in Glory?
Janice Fitzpatrick05/03/08
Wow. This is amazingly beautiful and touching! I like the ending how the helium balloom was released, signifying the mom's crossing over to her heavely home with her beloved husband. I loved this piece! Continue letting the Lord use your writing. It really blessed me bunches hon! Janice