Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Bitter and Sweet (05/28/09)
TITLE: The Dearest Mother
By Verna Mull
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But, when I arrived, my mother loved me... She often told me that God’s plans were much better than hers, and she was so grateful to Him. I loved to hear her tell the story over and over again.
Mother read to me and cried with me. She read me stories like Elsie Dinsmore, (that I cannot read today, without crying.) Mother tried her best to teach me to work, and actually made work seem like fun. She gave me free time to climb the trees, play with my dolls and kittens, and to just be a tom boy if I would so choose.
If I was ever sick, she sat by my bed and read to me, and prayed with me, and it seemed that the housework was of little importance at those times. One time I had chicken pox, and I insisted that there were cracker crumbs in my bed. She patiently wrapped a blanket around me in a chair, and I watched her shake out every sheet and blanket on my bed. Of course, she convinced me that I was wrong, but my, the patience she had!
When I was 10 or 11 years old, my mother had to have the Doctor come out every day as she was very ill. I was so worried, and so to try to comfort me, she explained what was going on. She was hemorrhaging with the “change of life.” The Dr. was coming to pack her every day, and things were not going well. She told me that she had talked to my sister, (who had been married about 4 years by then) and she had promised that if Mother died, she would take me and raise me. This really frightened me instead of comforting me. I wasn’t over fond of my sister’s husband, as he seemed to think children should be perfect, and besides, I wanted my dear mother. She also told me that she was older than the mothers of my friends, and that I should know that there was a good possibility that she would not be able to be with me until I had a home of my own. She told me that I shouldn’t worry. Jesus would take care of me. Well, I did worry; I was so frightened to think of not having her and Daddy. Well, praise the Lord, my Mama got well. My mother often snored right after going to sleep. When she rolled over, she would make one loud snore, and then, silence. I knew that she was over her major problem, but I couldn’t forget that she had told me that she would probably die sooner than my friends’ moms.
Whenever this happened, I lay there in my bed, afraid that my mother had passed away. I couldn’t sleep, and I began to feel sick to my stomach. When I couldn’t stand it any longer, I would call for my Mother. She hopped out of bed, and as soon as I saw her, I felt better, but I just couldn’t admit what I was thinking. My mother had some sort of a Watkins liniment recipe that she fixed when we were sick. She would get up, go down to the kitchen, and start a fire in the old cook stove so that she could heat water and make this concoction for me. I could hardly stay awake until she arrived, as this was a long process. I think I was sleeping almost before she got laid down in bed. This went on for years. Oh how I’ve regretted what I put her through!
Well, all the worry was in vain as my mother lived to be 83 years old, but I have never forgotten how much she cared for her children, and I hope that she knows how dear she was to me. The very best thing of all, I will have eternity to tell her. She certainly took the bitter with the sweet.
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