Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to you!

This may always be a tough holiday for those of us who are the mother of a child who has died, but I am so happy to be a mother, and especially grateful to be the mother of both of my children, David and Katie. Katie is still my precious daughter, even though she doesn't live here anymore.

After her passing, I found a letter that she had written to me, two years and one day before she died. She was perfectly healthy at the time she wrote it. The letter is precious to me, and I carry it in my purse, with our family photos. It says (with her spelling exactly as it is in the letter):

"Dear Mom,
I want you to know that I love you all the time. Every single second of life and death. I'm thinking of you always. You will always be my mother. You come and help me when I'm hurt, you help with my arts and crafts, you supervize me with the hot glue gun, you kiss my ouie's better, you prepare meals for the family every night (unless we go out to dinner), your smile brightens every day of my life, you cook very well, you always help me with my homwork, when I have a tummyach you give me tums, and if that doesn't work you give me a banana or rice from the Brat diet, and you love all of the family with all of your heart.
I LOVE you Mommy!


Love,
Kathryn Emilie Gerstenberger"
This Mother's Day, I share this letter with you, in the hopes that Katie's words will comfort you, or bring you joy. She is right: we will always be our child's mother, "every single second of life and death." Thank you, Katie, for a beautiful Mother's Day gift.

You can read another essay of mine over at Hopeful Parents today.

15 comments:

ChiTown Girl said...

Wow, what a letter. That girl just never ceases to amaze me!

Happy Mother's Day, my friend!

Sheri said...

It does comfort me. She sent you a timeless, precious message from somewhere deep in her eternal soul. Happy Mother's Day my friend.

Kay said...

What a sweet letter. I am amazed every time I see pics of her... she absolutely radiates life and love. What a beautiful girl! I'm glad today is a good day for you.

Hugs and prayers to you always!
~kay

unbashedjoy said...

Happy Mother's Day, Karen :) You are loved every day! What a truly amazing girl, your Katie.

Busy Bee Suz said...

This letter is such a gift and I am so happy you shared it with us.
I love your article you wrote...love your thoughts especially at the bottom: "whatever you do, do it with love"....so perfect.

I tried to leave a comment there too, but my URL is messed up? huh? Suppose I must see a specialist.
Happy Mother's day to you my friend!!!

Jason, as himself said...

What a beautiful letter to a beautiful mother from an amazing daughter.

KBL 2 ORD 2 SAN 2 LUV said...

Thank you for posting Katie's letter. It does comfort me because it gives me hope. A lot of hope, and today I really need it. God bless your deep heart.

Elizabeth said...

Kisses to you and what a wonderful letter!

Smileygirl said...

That is the sweetest letter ever. Brought tears and laughter at the same time. Such a gift to you and thank you for sharing with the rest of us.

Love to all.

Pinky Chong said...

Another amazing post! Katie's letter was so adorable. The love that you share with her is just too precious. I love my mom, but we never quite clicked. Her hard and difficult childhood makes it hard for her to connect with me as an adult. But she was so comforting and loving when I was a child. I love that Katie mentions the Brat diet in the letter. That was one of ways Mom nurtured us when we felt sick and puny. Happy Belated Mother's Day.

Jennifer said...

Something I always notice in pictures of you guys (the whole family, or at least one parent with David and/or Katie) is that you look so NATURAL and comfortable in your big love for each other. There are smiles, arms casually slung around shoulders or waists, and some ineffable quality that just radiates out from each of you. I love how the qualities of both David and Katie come out in their photographs -- usually, David seems to have more of a peaceful, quiet presence in the picture, while Katie is more exuberant -- but you can easily see both of them have such joy.

That letter was beautiful and earnest and sweet. I was, of course, very struck by the line about her loving you "all the time. Every single second of life and death." What a great, great gift -- and what a true gift too. She IS loving you now, and you are loving her too.

Blessed Mother's Day to you!

Jennifer

Stephanie said...

That is the sweetest letter. What a darling girl! My boy Sam, 6, greeted me with, "Happy Mother's Day Mom. Ah, Mom, Dad told me I had to say that." Ha.

Blessings.

Renee said...

Every second of life and death...

Very beautiful Karen. Very beautiful.

God bless you.

Love Renee xoxo

Desert Rat said...

Thank you for sharing your letter, it gave me a good, healthy cry.

Anonymous said...

i love this site..it bruings such tears to my eyes and i love that you give of yourself so whole-heartedly.....you are my hero.....on anothe rnote.....

you cn look up the house on virtual tour,......
www.johnpacilio.com

address: 1906 N. Alabama St.

i normally wouldn't do that! but, feel lik you are family Karen....we love the house...it has HEnry all over it. Just perfect in every way. hugs to you and yours....michelle tucker