99: A Well-Timed Message

99: A Well-Timed Message

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: My Amazing Mom

A Well-Timed Message

Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.

~Eskimo Proverb

Despite all of the Mother’s Day reminders and marketing messages that appear all over TV and social media, I try to remain calm. But the truth is, it hurts to realize that I’ll not see my mom again in this lifetime. It’s my first Mother’s Day without her.

Sometimes, perusing the books on my shelves can have a calming effect on me. I thought it would be a good diversion from the sadness I was feeling. I noticed some of the books were sticking out further than others, and there were gaps here and there in the rows. Perhaps one of my sons borrowed a book, or maybe I lent some to a neighbor. But they were definitely not in their usual neat order. Strange, I thought.

As I started straightening them, I pulled out a worn, yellowing paperback called Summer on Blossom Street by Debbie Macomber. Holding the book, I clearly remembered why it had earned a spot on my shelves among the hardcovers. It had been a gift from Mom six years earlier. She often bought secondhand books at the Salvation Army store.

As I opened the book, her familiar handwriting spoke the words my heart needed to hear that night. Her note read:

May 2010

Happy Mother’s Day . . . and all the Mother’s Days to come . . .

Love, Mom

“And all the Mother’s Days to come . . .”

In her wisdom, Mom must have known that there’d come a time when she would not be here. And to bring some measure of comfort, she hand-scrawled a simple message in my favorite thing—a book!

I don’t know what drove me to my bookshelves and that particular paperback, as it had likely sat undisturbed for six years. But stumbling across my mom’s gift and timely message reminded me to never lose hope, for my mother’s love will always be with me.

~Anita Gogno

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