The Things I Meant to Say: A tribute to my mother

I never thanked her enough. For making sure I had all I needed.

For providing all that I wanted that was good for me.

For creating a safe and loving environment for me to grow up in.


Woven into my mother’s life story was an incredible amount of pain.

As a child, she suffered with rheumatic fever. As an adult, health issues plagued her.

Despite that pain, she created a loving home with five active kids and one busy husband.


She filled the kiddie pool in the summer.

She made hot chocolate in the winter.

She popped popcorn for Sunday night Disney.

She made sure all our birthdays were joyful and holidays festive.

She encouraged me to try and not to quit.

When I asked to take dance, she signed me up and sat in the waiting room.

When I wanted to tumble, she took me to the gym.

She was present; from sports events to performances, from lessons to competitions.

When my words were mixed with tears, she listened.

When my young heart was broken, she cared.

Mom and Me in Girlscouts_hq (1)

From domestic queen to Brownie troop leader, from stay at home mom to career woman, she was talented and inspirational.

With needle and thread in her hands, she created beautiful works of cross-stitch art.

Her seamstress skills were amazing. Growing up, she sewed my favorite Halloween costumes. I always wanted to be a princess, and she made sure that I was.

She stayed up late the night before my wedding, making certain my bridesmaid dresses were just so.

When my daughter grew up, she designed beautiful dresses with rainbows and lace.

For Mom 39_hq (1)

She devoured one book after another, instilling a love of reading.

Playing hours of classical on the piano, she inspired in her family a love of music.

She camped, cycled, and traveled, imparting a sense of adventure.

In later life, she studied to become a paralegal and helped my father in his office.

IMG_20190319_082330_original (1)

The last time we spoke on the phone, she told me to keep writing. Don’t quit.

The last time we were together, she told me how proud she was of me.

I never told her enough, how proud I am of her. How much she means to me.

The foundation she laid gave me the confidence and strength to become the person I am today.


Four weeks ago, she told her sister, “I’m waiting for Jesus to take me home.”

And that He did. He took her home at the end of July where she abides in His loving arms.

I wasn’t there to say goodbye. But, I am confident in the fact that we will see each other again.

In a place where she feels no pain, where she abides in perfect peace and incredible joy.

Where I can tell her all the things I meant to say.


I love you forever, mom. Rest in peace.

14 Comments Add yours

  1. flutesss says:

    This moved me to tears, Brenda. Beautiful words for a beautiful woman inside and out. Your mother will always hold a special place in my heart. I’m so sorry for your loss and that you couldn’t be with her. I’m continuing to pray for you and all your family. 

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The tears do sneak up on me still. It’s difficult to believe she’s gone, though I know I’ll see her again. Thank you, Kathy, for your encouragement and your prayers.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Jen says:

    Here I am, sitting at my desk at work. I have makeup on for the first time this summer. I innocently open your blog (which I love to read and look forward to reading). I start reading about our precious mom and the tears just start to flow!!!! I miss her Brenda and I know that she loved us all so very much. Always remember that!! She was an incredible lady and will be missed by so many. I am thankful that she is no longer pain and with our Heavenly Father. 🙂 Love you sis, so very much! Thank you for sharing and for the smeared eye makeup :)>. Talk soon!!!!


    1. I’m so sorry about your smeared make-up, Jen. 🙂 And, thank you for the encouraging and sweet words. I need to remember the last couple visits home, sitting and talking with mom. I know that time was a special gift from God. Another blessing was the last couple phone calls, she said “I love you, never forget that.” For one call, you were holding the phone. Wow, what a gift. You are right, she loved us. Now, she is renewed, no hindrances or pain. Please stay safe. I didn’t realize or forgot you were going back to the office. I love you so much and look forward to when we can hug and talk in person.


  3. Ann Coleman says:

    I’m so very sorry for your loss, Brenda! That was a beautiful tribute to a wonderful mother. The Brownie photo was especially touching…You were blessed to have her in your life.


    1. Thank you, Ann, so much for your sweet expression of sympathy. I certainly feel blessed to have had such a giving and loving mother.


  4. JT Twissel says:

    This is a lovely tribute to a beautiful woman. Hugs. Jan


    1. Thanks so much, Jan. I love the hugs!


  5. Kelly Little Brock says:

    Brenda I remember your mom so well, as I spent lots of time at their house when Jenny and I were friends in junior high and high school. She was a very giving woman, and your tribute to her is beautiful. I think the lesson is to let people know how much you appreciate everything that they do and everything that they are to you. My prayers and love to your family.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Your comments made me smile. I’m so glad you spent time with her and remember. It’s certainly true that we need to let those closest to us what they mean to us. Thank you so much for your kind comments, love, and prayers, Kelly. ❤️


  6. Robert E Samples Jr. says:

    There are times in our lives that we live and we wonder about all the wonderful people that made our life‘s possible she was someone I appreciate when I was a young boy! Very much I think Aunt Janet was very comforting and safe, She always put a smile on my face to see her I’ll never forget her! We remember the people that are kind and loving we suppress the pain of abuse from others she was a angel ! She reminds me of grandma most ! Wish I spent more with her! 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your special words, Robert. They certainly made me smile. She was indeed kind and loving. I’m so pleased she was a safe and comforting person for you.


  7. I send my sincere condolences on the loss of a loved one, and I applaud this beautiful tribute and photos. It sounds like your Mom lived a rich and fulfilled life, and I’m sure she knew she was loved and valued by each of you. This hit very close to home because I don’t live a day without regrets for not saying thank you enough to my own Mom but hope and pray to do so again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Judy, for your kind expression of sympathy and your encouragement. I’m sure your mom knows how much you appreciate her though it wasn’t said as much as you’d like. And … there will be a day when we can let them know! ❤️🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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