ANNIE’S MAILBOX: ‘Prayer for My Mother,’ revisited
By Kathy MitchellSFlband Marcy Sugar
Dear Annie: I cut out this piece that appeared in an old Ann Landers column and am hoping you will print it for Mother’s Day.
“Prayer for My Mother”
“Dear God: Now that I am no longer young, I have friends whose mothers have passed away. I have heard these sons and daughters say they never fully appreciated their mothers until it was too late to tell them.
“I am blessed with a dear mother who is still alive. I appreciate her more each day. My mother does not change, but I do. As I grow older and wiser, I realize what an extraordinary person she is. How sad that I am unable to speak these words in her presence, but they flow easily from my pen.
“How does a daughter begin to thank her mother for life itself? For the love, patience and just plain hard work that go into raising a child? For running after a toddler, for understanding a moody teenager, for tolerating a college student who knows everything? For waiting for the day when a daughter realizes how wise her mother really is?
“How does a grown woman thank a mother for continuing to mother? For being ready with advice [when asked] or remaining silent when it is most appreciated? For not saying, ‘I told you so,’ when she could have uttered those words dozens of times? For being essentially herself — loving, thoughtful, patient and forgiving?
“I don’t know how, dear God, except to ask you to bless her as richly as she deserves — and to help me live up to the example she has set. I pray that I will look as good in the eyes of my children as my mother looks in mine.
Dear Annie: I wrote this a year ago, but things haven’t changed. I hope you will print it so my family will see it.
Today is Mother’s Day and I am so sad and alone. My daughter is 31 and my son is 27. Yesterday, my daughter promised we would go for brunch and she would spend the day with me. Instead, this morning both of my children gave me Mother’s Day cards and my son announced he was going out for dinner but would bring over pizza for my husband and me. Soon after, my daughter announced that she was going out to eat with a friend.
I was shocked. When I reminded them that it’s Mother’s Day and I wanted to spend time with them, my son replied that he is a grown man and can spend time with whoever he wants.
I am so hurt. Am I asking too much to want one day a year with my children?
Heartbroken in Canada
Dear Canada: For anyone who is reading this, please call your mother today. Just say you are thinking of her. If you are estranged, use this as an opportunity to reconcile. Or send a card or a note, or even an e-mail. It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive. Anything that says you are thinking of her would be appreciated, and it only takes a few minutes.
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