Fridays are often reserved for Five Minute Friday; however, on mornings when I volunteer, it can be challenging to get a post up and running before I have to get out the door. This week is one of those Fridays. This week has also been “one of those weeks” and I considered not even posting. But I came across the archived post which – just so happens – was originally an FMF edition. But, for today, it is a memory of my mom…and my grandma! Just in time for Mother’s Day. I know Sunday can be a challenge in different ways for many moms. I pray God grants you a special memory and perhaps a chance to create a new memory this weekend. Here are my original thoughts that came from the prompt “practice.”
Practice. Just the word immediately reminds me of my years of piano lessons. They were decades ago – they seem a lifetime ago – but memories of those required thirty minutes every afternoon still seem painful. Dreaded. Thinking about the time spent practicing is bittersweet. I recall the arguments, even tears, over getting it done. My mom admonishing, “Practice makes perfect!” But I also remember the results. The music I could play and the enjoyment I had. Oh, the enjoyment!! Truly bittersweet is the regret of not following through and my lack of ability now at the piano.
My mom’s mother (aka – my grandma) played the piano by ear. She even played and sang in the early years on a weekly radio program. Way before my time. My mother inherited her singing ability. Mom loved to sing – sang little choruses and “ditties” all the time – and used her singing voice to serve the Lord. Musical talent came naturally to both of them. For me…not quite as natural.
My musical ability requires much more practice and training. When I sing in the choir, I do best following a stronger singer. And my piano playing skills have all but disappeared since I gave up practicing – or even playing. I have always said that I have just enough musical talent to realize I don’t have enough talent. I enjoy singing and would love to sing well (or, at least, better). I would also like to learn a new instrument…which would be a very new trick for this very old dog:)
But whether your ability is learned or a natural gift, practice is needed. It is the only way to improve and perfect and for your ability to be of any value. I think my mother knew that having wonderful natural talent without ever using it is a shame. And so she pushed me…and never let up on those (too often) dreaded thirty minutes every afternoon. Such vivid memories. Memories of scales and Bach and Chopin. Of triumphs and failures.
Also memories of mom. Those memories are bittersweet as well, as they often are with anyone we miss so dearly. I love to remember – to rehearse those things – but the remembering also hurts. If you are missing your mother this weekend, I pray you will find joy, even peace, in a memory. Choose one or two special memories and savor those this Sunday. If your mom is alive, don’t take this time for granted. I know days like Mother’s Day can mean many things – and stir many emotions and responses – from all of us. Whether you are a mom or desperately want to be a mother. Whether your relationship with mom is close, strained, or absent. Or perhaps you are like me. Not only missing your mom but your own mama’s heart is full but forever marked by grief. Whatever your situation, find someone to bless on Sunday. Find another mom to appreciate, encourage, or simply to remember. It’s the best way to have a Happy Mother’s Day.