I wonder what my mother would have thought of these strange days.
A gentle Southern woman with a backbone of steel who lived through the Great Depression and WW II, along with facing countless other challenges and hardships over her ninety-two years.
Would she have been moved to panic or remained calm in the storm?
Would she shake her head at the people hoarding groceries or smile sadly at memories of her own times of want?
No matter what, I miss her wisdom during this chaotic time, miss hearing the reassuring sound of her voice. Even though I wouldn’t be able to visit with her in person at the risk of making her ill, just to hear her “Love you, Neese” and her stories of the ‘olden days’ over the phone would be the best medicine.
She is with me, though, and I have to remind myself that I am her daughter, also a strong Southern woman with a backbone of steel who does my best to remain gentle and follow her example of how to navigate life and how to treat people with compassion along the way.
Just like her, I make mistakes, I slip and fall, and I have many doubts and fears. But also like her, I will get back up, turn the other cheek and do my best to keep moving forward. I am always trying to do my best, give my best, and sometimes I fail.
I hear her wisdom in the recesses of my heart;
Be kind- there but by the grace of God go I.
Be humble, let your accomplishments speak for themselves.
Be grateful. There are so many people struggling. Things don’t matter- people do.
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Being silly is how I’ve made it through the hard times. Laughter is the best medicine.
She would also say, This, too, shall pass. And it will. We are all caught in the grip of fear and uncertainty right now and for the foreseeable future. It’s difficult to see through the prickly thorns of fear, but we have to keep faith that this crisis will lose its power over us in time and that we will learn and grow from it.
Until that time, stay safe, be well, and be kind.