Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Mother's Day

In honor of the upcoming holiday for all Mothers, I have brought out my classic story. I originally wrote this for a Metro Parent Magazine contest several years ago. I think it was too Catholic for them, but it is very suitable for this blog! I would also like to wish a very special Mother's Day this year to my beautiful mother-in-law, Marilyn who did such a great job in raising my husband Paul to be a good and decent man. To all of you gentle readers, please keep Marilyn in your prayers as she begins her battle against breast cancer.
Happy and Blessed Mother's Day to all!

Three Beautiful Marys

I’d like to share a story of three beautiful Marys for Mother’s Day. The first Mary is Mary, the Mother of God. My family has always had a great devotion to this Holy Woman. Several of my sisters and nieces and I get together monthly to honor her by praying the rosary together. It is our hope to model our lives after her loving, quiet presence.

The second mother in this story is my own mother, Mary Reindl. My mom lovingly mothered nine children, six of whom were girls. I never gave much thought to the tremendous challenges that she faced in raising so many children with so much love, until it became my turn to be a mother.

I have always thought that I would have lots of daughters, since this is the type of family that I grew up in, and I’ve cherished my sisters as they are all my best friends. But, my own family was not meant to mirror my childhood family. Instead, I became the mother of four sons within five years. I began to think that I wasn’t a very good mother to boys, and that I needed more practice, so God kept giving me more boys to practice with! My sons, John, Justin, Joe and Jack, are all wonderful. They bring me so much joy! During those early years, which were a blur of nursing, diapers and Barney, I always turned to my mother for advice and support. Although we were separated by a distance of 80 miles, my long distance phone bill attested to the many hours she spent listening to me fret about my mothering skills (or lack of skills!).

So, it was with great sadness, that I said goodbye to her for the last time, when my youngest son, Jack, was six months old. My mother, Mary, died of a brain tumor on Mother’s Day, 1999. Mother’s Day has been bittersweet for me ever since, as I still miss her presence very deeply, every day. Now, my conversations with her are really long distance, because I know that she’s in heaven and is still a very good listener. I also know that she still has so much love to share.

When Jack was two years old, I became pregnant again. At the first ultrasound, I was found to have amniotic bands, which are pieces of uterine wall that have broken away and dangle in the amniotic fluid. These bands have the potential to amputate limbs in utero, or worse, strangle the growing fetus. So my niece Jenny called an “emergency rosary”, where my sisters, nieces and I immediately came together to pray. We prayed to Jesus’ mother, Mary, and also to our own mother Mary, and begged them to pray to God for us. Our request was to keep my growing baby from harm. One month later, when I returned to a specialist for a repeat ultrasound, all of the bands were gone! It was a miracle from our two favorite Mary’s in heaven.

The next miracle occurred on June 25th, 2001, when my husband, Paul, and I gave birth to the third Mary, our only daughter. It was not only a miracle that she was a healthy baby girl, but also because she was born on my mother’s birthday. I believe that God sent my daughter Mary on this special day as a testament to the love of my own mother. My daughter Mary is now seven years old, and has been my constant joy. So, this Mother’s Day, I give thanks for my three beautiful Marys, and I ask God’s blessings upon all mothers for the miracle of a love filled Mother’s Day.

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