If ever there was a Mother to celebrate…

by

Mother’s Day has a new significance for me this year.  I would have always said I live with a great one, but in the last year my concept of greatness has been enriched.  Yes, there’s her organization and creativity; her willingness to serve and volunteer; her concern and her laughter; her daily sacrifices and priorities that become very clear when I’m left to handle them myself for extended periods of time.  We’ve reaped the benefits of motherhood in our family and tasted much of the joy and fulfillment over the last 12 years.  This year we’ve caught a glimpse of how much it can demand—and in trying circumstances Trish has been an amazing example to all who have been fortunate enough to observe her.  I’m the lucky guy who got a front-row seat.

We tend not to do much of the traditional when it comes to such celebrations.  Like I do every year, I floated the idea of brunch at the Biltmore or Bacara and got shut down.  After my shocking discovery this past week, I don’t think she would twist the dagger and suggest McDonald’s, but we’ll probably keep it simple and not spend our time out waiting somewhere.  The kids had various projects in the works at school, but the unexpected day off due to the Jesusita fire means they weren’t able to bring them home.  Max had additional consternation yesterday:  he started a small craft project to make a substitute gift, got interrupted by the beckoning swimming pool, and returned to it later to discover that the conscientious and efficient mother he was trying to honor had cleaned it all up.

But we do have our standby gift ready.  Several years ago, the boys and I made Trish a garden fountain out of some flower pots.  It brought a few weeks of peace and tranquility to the back yard until an errant skateboard put it out of commission.  It was then added to the list of “things that only take Rolf 10 minutes but will take him a year to actually do”.  The next year’s Mother’s Day gift was…to fix the fountain—until Livy stuffed the pump hose full of gravel after a few weeks’ enjoyment.  The next year it got hit with a football.  You get the picture.  I’m not sure Trish recalls that I packed up all the parts when we moved, but after a year’s hiatus the kids and I fixed the fountain again.  Only cost me $4.23, reminding you once again of my trademark ability to woo my wife.  No ladies, I don’t have an eligible twin.

I actually did go out in search of something other than my usual goofy card this year, but couldn’t find any “serious” ones that spoke to the journey we’ve been on this year.  Lots of words and pretty pictures, but none captured it.  So, I went with goofy and wrote in what I wanted to say.

I am including the poem below as a Mother’s Day tribute.  There might be parts of the heart community where it’s reached cliché status, but it does speak to so much of what we’ve been through.  I offer it first and foremost, as a tribute to Trish, but also to the heroic moms we’ve been introduced to over the year who have provided inspiration and comfort as they contend for their kids.  As I read it, I especially remember those mothers whose little ones aren’t with us anymore—may the admirable grace and strength they fought with be met with comfort and peace today.

 

The Day I Became a Heart Mother

One day my world came crashing down,
I’ll never be the same.
They told me that my child was sick.
I thought, “am I to blame”?
I don’t think I can handle this.
I am really not that strong.
It seemed my heart was breaking.
I have loved him for so long.

I will not give up on this child.
I will listen to your advice.
I will give my child any chance.
No matter what the price.
I will learn all that I need to help my child thrive.
I’ll even use that feeding tube.
My child must survive!

Will he need a lot of therapy?
Will he gain the needed weight?
Please God, help me do this.
I will accept our fate.

When the monitors beep at night, it serves as my reminder.
How many parents would love that sound.
Tomorrow I will be kinder.
As another Angel earns his wings,
I run to my child’s bed.
I watch him sleep for quite a while.
I bend down and kiss his head.
I cry for the parents whose hearts have been broken.
I look to You wondering why?
Oh Lord, I just can’t know your ways….no matter how I try.

And yet, I trust you hold his life, and guide us through each day.
My mind says savor each moment he’s here,
but my heart begs, “PLEASE let him stay”!

From pacing the surgical waiting room, to sitting by his bed.
From wishing for a good nights sleep, to learning every med.
From wondering, “will he be alright?”, to watching him reach out his hands.
With every smile my heart just melts, despite life’s harsh demands.

For all who see that faded line.
I look to them and smile.
You see my child is loved so much.
I would face ANY trial.
That scar I trace with my finger (It’s the door to his beautiful heart).
God must have known how much I’d love him (Just as He loved him from the start).

A heart mom is always a heart mom.
Now wise beyond her years.
For those who have angels in heaven,
Our hearts share in all of your tears.

Every day I will try and remember,
I was chosen for him (and no other).
I will always embrace that beautiful day…….
When I became a “Heart Mother”.

– Author Unknown

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19 Responses to “If ever there was a Mother to celebrate…”

  1. The Mannings Says:

    Happy Mother’s Day, Trish!

  2. Oma + Opa Says:

    We second your tribute to Trish, the extra special wonderful Mom,
    Her laughter, her caring, her endless energy and love she extends to all those
    who cross her path. Three and many more cheers to Trish – Mom
    and lots of hugs and kisses, We are so proud to have you as our Daughter in law

  3. Pat Says:

    Oh, oh, there go the tears again as I read the poem! Happy Mother’s Day to Supermom-Trish! My prayers are for you today, Trish, and for Rudy and the rest of your wonderful family. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of the family though I am far away and have not even met you–yet!

  4. Liz Horvath Says:

    Happy Mothers Day!
    You deserve a wonderful day!

  5. Uncle Steve Says:

    I think if I was in charge, I’d open up the Heroes section of Rudysbeat for a certain Mom who is certainly one of my heroes!

  6. Dawn Bettencourt Says:

    wow, what words, so much meaning……prayers to all of you, Dawn’s Mom

  7. Grandma Jo & Granddpa Dick Says:

    Dear Rudy, Your exceptional mother is our daughter, Trish. As you grow and come to love her in greater measure you will also come to know how much others love and admire her–always have. You are so blessed that she and your daddy were chosen by our Lord to be lifelong partners who promised at their wedding: “We’ll Build a Household of Faith.” That beautiful song has certainly been lived out in their home and the love they share has blessed all who know them. To have Oma and Opa sing praises to and about our daughter is one of the highest compliments we could receive as her parents. The nice thing about this is that we feel the same way toward your daddy, Rolf. When two families come together and recognize similar family faith and values, the extended family is a wonderful experience. Your brothers and sister already cherish not only their parents and grandparents, but also their aunts, uncles and cousins. Now you are “one of the clan”, little sweetheart, and we all are blessed this day. Smile, you are loved.

  8. kelly Says:

    Rolf, I give you a hard time about being the “Austrian Love God” because of your smooth tendency to “super-size” and that place that shall remain unspoken, but I tell you what, you have been blessed with a beautiful wife who is an amazing mother to your beautiful children and they are so truly blessed to have you as there father and husband. The outside may say Austrian, but the inside is all hearts and flowers and deep love for family. You’re alright. Way to go on the fountain, too.

    p.s.- NO, I’m not looking for a raise.

  9. Dawn Bettencourt Says:

    Thanks for sharing your words that ring so true…and for the lump in my throat that signifies my pride in being a “Heart Mom.” Love and prayers for all! Happy Mother’s Day!

  10. Allison & Mike Kenyon Says:

    Trish, you are certainly one of my heroes and examples, and one I’m proud to call a friend! Love you and Happy Mother’s Day!

  11. Bonnie Lisama Says:

    Happy Mothers Day! You are truely blessed! Wonderful kids and an extraordinary husband. Hope you have your best day ever!

  12. Andrea Says:

    How eloquent, entertaining, and moving your words, Rolf (as always!), and how beautiful and poignant the poem…. indeed Trish is an amazing Mom and we send our biggest Mother’s Day hugs, blessings, and admiration.
    Love to you all,
    Andi

  13. Renee Curtis Says:

    Happy Mama’s Day Trish! You are a treasured gift to your family. Love you and Rudy too! R

  14. Curt and Ann Dokken Says:

    Happy Mother’s Day Trish! We agree with all that has been said.
    Your kids are sooo blessed! You did good Rolf!
    Blessings…the Dokkens

  15. Lisa Says:

    Happy Mother’s Day to you Trish! You are such a beautiful family. And thank you Rolf for sharing your wonderful words with us. Love, Lisa, Paul, George and Nick B.

  16. Lori Bollow Says:

    Trish I really do think you are AMAZING! Rolf, I hope it is ok that I copied your poem onto my computer. I think I need to read it every once in awhile, especially when I don’t understand the aches in my own heart and questions in my mind in dealing with my son’s epilepsy. Your words are moving. The strength you both have continues to be such an encouragement to me. Much love to you both and your children! Lori

  17. amy fiorillo Says:

    Happy Mother’s Day! 🙂

  18. Mad at Rolf Joe Says:

    Let me tell you how I prepared jen for her first Mothers Day. I was in Target, saw the cards and remembered Mom’s day. Saw a light blue card with a Duck on it and thought it looked cute. It even said “Happy Mothers Day”.

    I bought, and had ordered her some kitchen utensil online. So Mr. Romantic gives her the card in the morning after letting her know her super sexy sensitive Vegetable Chopper was in the mail and she opens her card.

    “Happy Mothers Day, from your favorite Little Boy. I had forgot to read the rest of the card. Eh’ Boy or girl, whats the diff right?

    Then she reads your super duper Ode’ De La Trisch and forwards it to me ASAP! WHy can’t you be like Rolf? Fix things, carry things, write me love letters? On and on and on……

    Rolfie, please lower the bar, I am never gonna get any snuggles this way!

    WE LOVE YOU BOTH and cant wait to get you and the boys on the Island!

    JOE, aka Super Hubby!

  19. Theresa Marie, a heart Mom Says:

    Dearest Brother & Sister in Christ,
    Becca is one of my dearest, dearest friends and went thru many years of caring for my precious heart child Michael. She forwarded this site to me. You are so correct in the beauty and wisdom of our precious God in giving these beautiful, courageous, wise children to us to love and care for….I told Becca I consider our children to be mini arcs of God…and we like King David are honored by God to love and protect them. And to have many adventures, kisses, hugs, laughs and inner sanctum communications with the Lord thru our beautiful childrens suffering, strength, peace, trust in us and their intense knowlege of the presence and love of their Maker. We are a tribe that all feel with one heart (families with heart children). God bless you every moment and remember “the joy of the Lord is our strength”…..and He is wise, loving and kind. Much love from one mommy to another. Theresa Marie

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