The gift of freedom

I love Mother’s Day.  I’m not a huge fan of holidays that have been engineered by greeting card companies, but this one is nice.  A day to celebrate our wonderful legacies, to let our moms know how much we love and appreciate them, to reflect on all that they’ve brought to our lives, and, yes, I’ll admit it, a day that’s all about me.  I jest, of course.  Mother’s Day took on new poignancy after my mom was called home in 2009, and the Mother’s Days since then lost some of their sheen.  But, this year has felt different.  Now that my Dad has been called home with her, the thoughts of her on this day simply make me smile.

My week has been filled with blessings, starting with the new stereo system for my convertible Mustang that my man had installed for me (all the speakers work!).  The highlight was a surprise visit from our oldest, who lives in Houston and drove in without telling her Dad or me that she was coming.  She coordinated with our youngest, who came over to our house on Friday night in an effort to keep us awake until her sister got here.  All of that was under wraps of course, and if you know our youngest, you know what a feat that was.  Even at 24, she’s hard pressed to keep a secret, but she managed this one with flying colors.  Our beautiful daughter waltzed in about 9 and my Mother’s Day was complete.

We did something different by way of celebration this year, we cooked and had my in-laws over on Saturday.  This had been decided earlier in the week, when Gary & I had no knowledge that Misty was coming in, or that she would only be here on Saturday.  Got to love how God works things out.  That one had me shaking my head with wonder, and asking Gary repeatedly if he knew that Misty was coming in.  A wonderful meal, great conversation, and lots of laughs, then our Saturday evening worship service filled my day to overflowing.  I can’t remember a nicer Mother’s Day, and I’ve had a lot of really, really good ones.

So, that brought us to today, the actual “holiday”.  I got another gift this morning, the gift of a free day.  Now, you moms, wives, and daughters know how rare those are, so don’t be envious.  We slept in a little, then I got up, made coffee, and leisurely read my Bible.  Even the weather cooperated with my weekend, sunny and cool, allowing me to get a late start on my run. Those late starts will soon be a thing of the past, but I’m welcoming the warmer temps with open arms.  So very ready to sweat!  After my devotion, I checked Facebook updates, and they made me smile.  So many pictures of moms, some who, like my mom, have gone to their heavenly reward, others who are still with their families, tending their flocks even into old age.  I will admit to suspiciously bright eyes as I read post after post, and saw beautiful images of mothers, daughters, sons, and grandchildren.  But, happy tears only on this beautiful spring morning.

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After two cups of coffee and a helping of yogurt, it was time to run. I absolutely love having church on Saturday evening and running long on Sunday morning.  The rails to trails that I run is almost deserted on Sunday mornings, and on perfect weather days like today, I get to have church again on my run.  I started out on my usual route on the Trace, but when I came to the part that opens up to the trails that have been laid out across and around the track, I made the decision to hit the trails.  I love trail running, but don’t typically do it when I’m alone.  I’ve never run the trails at the Trace, so I decided to have an adventure.  I had nothing pressing to get back to, having had family lunch yesterday, so I decided to just run until I was tired, then head back.  What started as a four miler became a six miler that was filled with wonder, worship, and prayer.  Those are the runs I live for.  They’re rare, but they give such a sweet gift that it lingers on the soul for months to come, a memory filled with promise, hope, and peace. Got a couple of pictures, got back on the Trace and ran the last mile and a half as hard as I could.

Loved the name of this loop!  So beautiful this morning with the sun coming in and green as far as the eye could see.

Loved the name of this loop! So beautiful this morning with the sun coming in and green as far as the eye could see.

Thought I would save this loop for another day.  :/

Thought I would save this loop for another day. :/

Couldn’t leave without a word and picture about my sweet mom. Miss her so much, but very much at peace with her loss. After she died and my dad was still alive, I would dream of her often and always wake up with a feeling of unease. After dad passed away in January, I began to dream of them both, always together. I can’t remember the dreams when I wake up, but I’m always smiling and have a sense of peace. So thankful they’re together again.

One of the last images I took of Mom, on the beach trip that my sister and I took them on.

One of the last images I took of Mom, on the beach trip that my sister and I took them on.

Whether or not you’re a mom, have a spectacular day today. Live, laugh, and love. Spend some time outdoors and embrace the ones you love.

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