Sunday, December 22, 2013

Mom and Dad

Since Thanksgiving, I have felt this sense to celebrate and enjoy the holidays as though it were my last. Not because I feel as though it will be, but more because of the possibility that it could be because we are not promised one minute.

I have two friends that have to watch their parents face tough challenges tonight. Their parents are in the hospital fighting for their lives. One of them is sitting beside her mom’s bed as she fights to recuperate from a sudden brain aneurysm. The other is sitting beside her father’s bed as he battles a long term illness that is associated Agent Orange.

Their trials made me reflect on my own parents. 

I remember my dad teaching me how to ride my bike and getting so excited only to turn around and see him cheering me on many feet away, before tumbling to the ground.

I remember him taking me to the hospital in Berlin to have my ears pierced while a cloth covered my face. 

I remember playing outside under his watchful eye as he sat on the porch laughing and talking with my uncle in Greece. 

I remember being so happy when I saw him sitting in the audience as I prepared to perform in a classroom play. I walked out with a little extra confidence and smile on my face.

I remember him telling me that it was time to learn how to drive a stick and then 5 minutes later telling me to drive him home...on the main road. I still laugh about that and can still drive a stick if I needed to. 

I remember a letter he wrote to me letting me know how much he supports me in my decisions and that he will always be there for me. That letter meant the world to me. I always knew that he loved me, but he's a man of few words and to see it written brought me to tears. I cried that day, not because of the situation I was facing, but because he reminded me that I could handle anything that would come my way and that he would be there every step of the way to help me through it...and he still does it today.

I think about the way his face lights up when he sees his grandchildren walk through the door or talks about them.

My dad is the strong silent type. He doesn’t offer his opinion much, however, if you ask, he will gladly share everything that he knows and wants you to know. He has been one of my greatest supporters. He may not agree with my decisions, but he will always be there for me and support me. 

I remember my mom always sitting in the crowd cheering me on while I cheered. 

I remember her being there for every single function that we had whether it was sports or school related. 
I remember her constantly hugging and kissing me, whether I was in the mood or not. Letting me know that I could be anything that I wanted to be. To never settle for anything less than what I am worthy of. To demand respect in every situation and to work for all of the things that I want and need. 

I remember her red knuckles as she wrung out clothes and her white knuckles as she taught my brothers and I how to drive. 

I remember sitting with her as she read stories to me and helped to foster a love that I still have today.

I remember watching her swallow her pride and overcome tall obstacles to accomplish something that she worked hard to achieve. 

I think about her now with her grandchildren, willing to do anything for them.

I think about her undying and unconditional love for her family. Her family is her everything and she makes sure we know it and there isn’t much she wouldn’t do for each one of us. 

My parents taught me so much about unconditional love and putting family first, respect in my marriage and working together to build our life and raise our children, and never giving up on myself and creating the opportunities to succeed. 

I see my friends and their current situations and I think of my own fears. My parents are my everything and I am so afraid of losing them.

I am so grateful for everything that they have shown me, taught me, and given me in my life. I appreciate that no matter what happens tomorrow; today is the gift that I have with them. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in schoolwork, work or kid’s activities that I don’t stop by their house for a longer period than I want. Sometimes, I don’t call as much as I should and there’s no reason behind it except that I just don’t talk on the phone much any more so I don’t think about it.  This week has helped me realize that I am not promised time with my parents, it is not a given that they will live to an old age of 100, and that I need to stop taking for granted that they will be there every time I walk in their house. That my dad will be in his recliner and my mom on her corner of the couch with her coffee cup.  

I know that one day, things will be different.

Tonight, I will continue my prayers for Mr. W and Mrs. L. I will pray for comfort, peace and no pain for him. I will pray for healing and comfort for her. I am praying for strength for their families and that they feel all of the love and support that we are sending to them. Miracles do happen and I am wishing that they find the joy in this season.
Tonight, I say thank you to my parents for teaching me so much, for loving me unconditionally, for being my biggest fans and supporters, for cheering me on when I succeeded, and lifting me up when I fell flat on my face. I love you...I love you. I can't think of anything more I can say that will sum it all up except for I love you.


  1. What a beautiful tribute to your parents. Beautiful but very true....I would love to have just 1 more hello, 1 more conversation, 1 more smile, just 1 more minute....with my Mom. I hate that she is missing the memories with my children that we all take for granted. ....
    Great lesson to teach us all....never take tomorrow or your family for granted♥♥♥

    1. Thank you Stephanie. I just feel so helpless for my friends. I am praying and keeping them in my heart, but it also made me think about my own parents. I know you would. Sad that it takes moments like this to help me and other people stop and truly appreciate everything, but I'm grateful for the reminder. Love you honey!

  2. Angie you have such a beautiful way of expressing yourself with the written word. Your post touched me deeply and made me think of my own parents and my good times growing up, my dad in his recliner and my own mom in her spot on the couch coffee cup in hand. Moments are so precious. I too will put your friend's parents in my prayers. Happy holidays!

    1. Thank you Angie! I hope you had a Merry Christmas!!