The Power of Choice

Yesterday, I lost my momma. Just typing those words is a difficult task and saying them out loud is nearly impossible. My mom was a spectacular person. If you had the pleasure of knowing her, you know just how special she was.

My mom and I were inseparable. I actually get made fun of to this day from family because I only let my mom hold me as a child (from birth to maybe 5 or 10 but who’s counting). She did everything she could to make me happy. If you were my friend, you were my mom’s friend, and she probably treated you like one of her own. She most likely fed you (sometimes more than your belly could handle), and when we were old enough, she learned how to make one strong margarita to share with family and friends. Mom and I shared a special bond. I could call her and know in an instant if she was having a bad day, or visa versa and we could usually have each other laughing by the end of the phone call. She wasn’t just my mom, she was my very best friend.

I have good and bad moments as I process this and deal with this grief but I have come to the realization that the way I choose to look at things greatly impacts me. So rather than wallowing in my sorrows, today I am choosing to see the good.

I choose to see how God worked through my family- My family and I lived in Louisville, Kentucky until we decided that St. Louis, MO would be our new home. We sold our house, found 2 new jobs, and bought a house within 6 weeks. We were home for a month, and then my mom was diagnosed. God brought us here (quickly), and I thank him every day for guiding us here so that we could be with mom and dad in her last year.

I choose to remember and see how great mom was as a person. It is only because she was so great that this is so painful.She was the most selfless human I have ever encountered. She was always doing something for someone else. The outpouring of love from everyone that we have received is a testament to just how great she was. She touched so many lives and I am so proud to call her my mom.

I choose to be happy and fully live my life from here on out- Now this is a hard one to accomplish right now but it was her wish on her final days and I promised her I would. I know she doesn’t want me upset. If I am having a bad day, gently remind me that mom is watching (she can be stubborn when she asks for something and we don’t do it)

I am choosing to see the good in this situation- while this is the hardest for me, when I force myself to think about what she accomplished in her life, all I can do is smile. My mom got to experience it all- She was a daughter, a sister to her 2 brothers, she picked up a few “sisters” from her nearest and dearest friends, she was a wife, friend, sister in law, daughter in law, mother, aunt, godmother, mother in law, and the one she was the best at was grandmother. She excelled at every single role she was in and truly set an example of how one should live but was never boisterous about it. She touched so many lives. I love seeing her friends, and family and hearing all the stories they share with her.

Finally, I choose to be strong. If there is one thing my mom was it was strong- warrior is the best way to describe her. This past year has been tough- mentally and spiritually but I know it has changed me for the better. I look at life a little differently, and I truly cherish every moment. I am a firm believer in the fact that you have to be uncomfortable, sometimes even struggle, to grow and improve. So rather than lying down and letting this kick me in the gut, I choose to stand up, be strong, and use this as a wake up call. I will attempt to continue spreading joy like she did to so many people. I know mom would approve of this decision as well.

I know I can’t physically hug her anymore, but I already feel the embrace of her spirit with me and that is an amazing feeling.

I love you mom!

Julie

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