In response to my blog of yesterday in which I made a list of books I have thought to write, one reader said she’d like to see me write about my mother’s recovery in my blog and I am already giving that some thought. There is so much about her story that would be an inspiration. Recently a cousin of mine sent me something my mother wrote before her death in 1998. I’d like to share that here:
To my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren (if I’m ever so fortunate), and to all people who have touched my life and changed me. Never go back to what I have been, only to have learned something, consciously or otherwise.
The secret of living is in the present moment. We have that at the start of our lives, where it is possible to learn two languages, even before we can read or write. We learn to coordinate our beautiful body with our mind, called reflexes. Is it a coincidence that it all happened before we knew what yesterday and tomorrow meant?
It is also to be noted that it is true for feeling also. “Mommy will be back tomorrow”, only brings tears. It only proves that one doesn’t have to understand in order to learn. Everything worth knowing is in the present. It is stamped in our memory. Never to be completely forgotten.
No matter what road we take, to get back to the present, that is where God is. Prayer is not to help God run the universe, it is to help the one who is praying. I heard a young priest quoted, “When we are in the present moment, we are in touch with eternity.” I didn’t understand what he meant, I didn’t have to. I learned my search for truth, that learning was in the “search.”
Today, I am still recovering from cancer surgery. My throat and tummy opening are uncomfortable. But the pain is in the back. Today we went to look at houses. Somehow I took notes. I investigated. I had an adventure. Lo-and behold, no back ache! Just the greatest escape God provides. What took a lifetime to learn, I could forget so easily. Is that what evil is? I don’t have to understand that either. I’m back in the present, where there is only love, learning and forgiving.
Let’s not forget about forgiving. Never refrain from holding your arms out to a two-year-old you have chastised. You are forgiven. We somehow unlearn that. And Christ died so we could learn that again. “Father, forgive them,” etc. Forgetting we have not control over, but forgiving is in the present moment. How can we hate the guy who milked the cow, when this ice dream tastes so good?!
I wrote the above as she wrote without editing, so some sentences may take some rereading to get what she was meaning.
I feel her presence deeply today.