I’d like to share an amazing woman with the world… my Mother. Her name is Carol. Why it is that The Eternal One caused her to be my Mother, out of all the people ever created and born, is a wonderful mystery. She is so incredibly unique and most assuredly does not know her worth. I was supposed to have this writing accomplished by Mother’s Day but I did not make it. The reason mostly being the difficulty of putting into words, thoughts that would even remotely be able to express the value of her life to me. I fear I cannot do it, but my heart wants to. I don’t want to look back a year from now saying, “gee, I never actually got around to writing down my heart for my mother.” That would cause me great sadness. So here goes. This is for you, Momma.

I was up early in the morning last sunday. It was the 3rd of May 2015, which for us also was the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread. It was a High Sabbath. I was alone. My husband was asleep and I began reflecting over my coffee of how our Master, Yahusha HaMoshiach had been crucified yesterday (many years ago of course), and considering what enormous sadness the disciples must have had at that time, and all the people who loved Him so dearly and believed upon Him must have been beside themselves in grief. Truly my heart was incredibly heavy with thoughts of what it must have been like in and around Jerusalem and Judea that day. Unimaginable.

I began to think back in time in my own life, recalling how it was that I came to hear about My Bridegroom. I was a young girl, about 9 years old, when I heard the Good News and of the events of that Passover week years ago. My mind was brought to that very day, the very church, the very pew, and the people who were there. I remember the pastor and some of the words he spoke about what YaHUsHa did for me. I remember the irresistible “push” the Set Apart Spirit had upon my body to get out of my comfortable spot between my Mother and Sister and walk down the aisle alone as a little bitty 9 year old to the front of that huge room full of people to profess that “I believe” and to be baptized. It was easter sunday of all times too.

I thought about that.

There I was, in a church meeting and worshiping on the wrong day of the week, gathering on a feast day with pagan roots meant to honor the goddess Ishtar… and my Betrothed plucks me right out of it all to be His. I marveled at the thought, and how He accomplishes that which He wants and no amount of any human or earthly obstacles will prevent it. He truly is the Almighty.

But this writing is not about my testimony. It is about Carol. And you know what I realized that morning over coffee on the first day of the Feast? These two are forever and ever intertwined in my life; My testimony, and my mother.

My mind and heart began to wander further and consider how it was that I came to be there that day, at that time, in that place. I was a 9 year old girl for goodness’s sake. It is not as if there is ANYTHING surrounding this event that I can claim to be my own doing. Nothing. Then I realized, there is someone I can appoint to be the one who worked here, on earth, assisting The Eternal One, with His plan, purposes, and desires.

Yes. It was Carol. My Mother.

I began to cry. And I don’t cry very easily. I wish I could cry more than I do. I used to cry a lot, especially when my only baby, Samuel passed away. I guess I used up a lot of my tears then. But this morning, I was crying at the wonder of it all and all my memories of my Mother were just overwhelming me – about how amazing she is, how much she did for us. She literally poured out herself as an offering for us – day in, day out, never ever stopping.

Allow me now to briefly as possible outline her background, as best I understand it to be, for it adds to the miracle of ‘who she is.’

She was born on December 24th. Yep, christmas eve. That is why her name is Carol. We always tried to make her birthday special because she used to tell us how her birthday was many times overlooked and overshadowed by christmas and growing up for her it was many times not treated as a “special day” for her. She was the only girl of three brothers. The family was poor and Catholic. She spent a great deal of her childhood moving – moving every time rent had come due because they could not make the rent payment. Her elementary school years were spent in catholic schools where she admits she was very unhappy. She recounts the great insensitivity she felt by the nuns. She did not do well in school. She had great trouble in reading and reading comprehension. When we talk now from time to time we both think she probably had dyslexia, but no one cared enough to figure it out and actually help her. So she struggled alone.

She was left alone at a very young age to be a “mother” to her three brothers. I am not altogether sure what my grandparents were actually doing, but they were not at home with the children. Momma tells of how she used to stand on a cooking pan so that she could reach the stove to prepare meals for herself and her brothers. She had a very large responsibility placed upon her at so young an age.

She met my Dad when she about 12 years old. Dad was about 14 or so and he and his family had moved in right next door to my Mom and her family and they have been together ever since. They are still married today. They married when Mom was still in high school her Junior year. She became pregnant with my older sister and was required to “drop out” of school. During those days, if a girl was pregnant – even if married – she was made to leave school. So Momma was not allowed to graduate high school.

During this time also, my Dad enlisted into the Army. He was in the Airborn and went to fight in Vietnam. Carol was alone, in a strange place (because she went to where Dad had to train from deployment), 18 years old and with a newborn baby. She tells of how terrified she was but at the same time it seemed she knew of her deep strength in that she had no one finally, lording over her and demanding she do this or that – but she had her little girl, my older sister who was her entire world. She had a family now of her own, truly her own and her whole life had prepared her to take care of her. And she could do that!

If you ask her today what it is that she ever wanted to be or to do in life, she will always respond the same, “All I ever wanted was to be a mother and have a family.” That’s it.

By more than one miracle, Dad returned alive from Vietnam… barely. He was malnutritioned, had intestinal parasites that almost killed him after the war, post traumatic stress that kept he and her both up many nights for a long time, and some of the other “typical” problems that many of the returning Vietnam Vets came home with that I will not mention. By this time, Momma had three small children: My sister, Me 15 months after Sis, and then our little brother a little over two years after me. Three children by the age of 21 years old.

Dad found employment in trucking. Not long haul trucking. He left early in the morning and returned every night and he was off weekends. They were able to get a small, fixer up house for which they mortgaged $9,000 dollars.

She was determined not to go to work until all her “babies” were in school. There was NOTHING more important to her than being at home to raise her children… nothing. She budgeted for a family of 5 people on a single income. She bought nothing for herself… ever. She had her children, she had a roof over her head, and she had enough money (if she was careful) to get groceries once a week. She had no trouble telling us kids “no” to all the “I wants” we proclaimed, and it was good for us. We did not go out to eat. She made all the meals; breakfast, lunch, supper – every day without fail. Without fail! Clothes were washed EVERY day and most of the time the clothes we slept in and took off in the morning were clean and folded and put away by the time we went to bed that night. In the early years, this was without a dryer and all the baby diapers were cloth diapers.

As we three got into school, she did go to work. She was a school bus driver. She loved this job. She was around kids, she was home mid day to clean house, cook supper, get things done, and off all summer with her babies. She also enjoyed being able to make money. She did not have to tell us “no” so often. She made sure we had breakfast every morning, a home packed lunch every day for school, and supper on the table every night — even working a full time job. And yes, the clothes were still clean each and every night. The woman did not miss a beat and was NEVER sick, or at least she never let it get her down if she was.

You see, the amazing thing about Carol is… that no one taught her this. No one taught her how to schedule her time and her days. No one taught her how to raise children, feed them, clothe them, change diapers. No one taught her how to budget money. I think more and more about this type of stuff all the time about Carol. I don’t think my Momma has had anyone, ever, take time with her and teach her something. This makes me sad, but all the more in awe of who she is and the person she is. And she did all this stuff wonderfully. There was no where she could take us that people did not comment about how clean we always were, how well behaved, and just overall how remarkable her children were. I remember that very poignantly.

I had really really bad baby teeth. My sister’s and brother’s teeth were fine, but mine were a mess. I was that little kid running around with silver caps on her baby teeth, ha ha ha. And I grew up to be a dentist. Mom always thought that was her fault. She became pregnant with me while Dad was still in Vietnam. He did get at least one R&R that they both spent in Hawaii, but Mom went through a lot of that pregnancy alone. For care she went to the Army medical facility and she tells of how she went to one appointment while pregnant with me and how the male physician lectured her for wearing pants to the appointment. She was to wear a dress or skirt so as to not take up too much of his time.

Well, that was it for the doctor’s appointments. She was so humiliated that she did not go back and she had no care while pregnant with me until the very end. She thinks this is why my teeth were bad. I tell her all the time, “Momma, don’t you worry about it, I would have done the same thing and I am glad you did it.” By the way, she made sure (even with NO MONEY), that I was taken for weeks on end, two or three times a week, as a child to the local dental school where students were training to be dentists. I received all the treatment I needed to keep my baby teeth in place so that my adult teeth would have space to come in where they needed to. I now, as a 45 year old adult, have all 32 teeth still. That dental school is where I ended up 20 years later training to be a dentist myself. Thanks Mom!

I remember my high school years too. We attended the local public schools for education, but I was very unhappy there. Really unhappy. So what did my Momma do? She took extra bus shuttle runs all year long during mid-day during her normal “break between runs” time that she could have spent doing what she needed to do… just to make extra money so that I could go to an affordable private school that incorporated Bible teachings with Academia for my Junior and Senior years. Momma, you never finish giving, and giving, and giving again do you?

She was not religious. She will tell you she was raised catholic, but when she married my Dad she was excommunicated from the church. She will also tell of how catechism and many the teachings did not “stick” with her. She did not understand them and could not internalize them. “It didn’t really make sense to me,” she would say when talking about it. “I just did what I was told to do.”

But she said she always knew *one thing* and that being… that her children were going to be in church. She did not have a dogmatic view of where but she was going to make sure we were there. She knew that much and that much she would do, and that much she most certainly did. We ended up growing up in a Presbyterian church in our neighborhood. They had a pretty good children’s program with vacation bible school, church camp in the summer, holiday programs by the children and choirs, etc. She did not go to church with us except on holidays but she sure made sure WE were there, every sunday for sunday school without fail.

You know, I don’t even know if Momma would have liked to be there each sunday or not. That is not good. I need to ask her and I will. She drove us there every sunday and picked us up afterwards. She would come to the “big church” with us on religious holidays and all the people would brag to her about her kids. She would just beam. I could go on for days about memories of all her goodness and selflessness. But this now brings me back full circle to where I started: that morning May 3rd over coffee.

It was my Momma, Carol, who had me in the right place at the right time to experience what I did that morning. I heard the Good News preached, and I believed. As my walk with my Beloved has grown and matured… I now know that the observances we were taught to keep are actually of pagan origin. And that is ok. My God overcomes ALL things and situations for His Own. My Momma did the very best she could. I know that as well as I know my own breath. Who could ask for more? I am not going to ask for more. I am blessed beyond measure, and I hold her in such great esteem, there are no words.

My thoughts considered that event we read about in the writings that record the re-newed Covenant, in Matthew chapter 26. There was an incident where a woman poured expensive perfume on our Master’s head as He sat and ate at the table. Yahusha’s taught ones complained about her wasting the expensive oil, but Yahusha honored her deed. He said, “Truly I say to you, wherever this Good News is proclaimed in all the world, what this woman has done shall be spoken of also, to her remembrance.” Matthew 26:13

From now on, whenever I give my testimony to others or in writing, I shall speak of a woman also, for her remembrance; My Momma – Carol.

Today and in the past several years, Carol’s body is breaking down on her. She has osteoarthritis, stenosis of her vertebral spinal foramena through which all the spinal nerves exit the spinal column. She has had three back surgeries and one neck surgery. If she hadn’t had the back surgery, she would have been left paralyzed from the waste down. It took three surgeries to get it right and she has steel bars and plates holding her back together. That time was pure hell for her and she still hurts but at least she can walk. The original neck surgery is now failing and she is about to lose function of her hands and arms and is preparing to have a second neck surgery.

I do not comprehend why such a wonderful, special woman has to go through so much in her life in these latter years. I pray without ceasing for her, for her healing and for relief of the constant and continuous pain she now endures just from living. I share this for the purpose of asking for prayer. If you are reading this post and are moved to… please pray for my Momma, Carol, for healing and pain relief. I thank you if you do so.

Momma, I love you. I adore you and honor you. You are truly special among women in my eyes.

She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Her children shall rise up and call her blessed;

Her husband too, and he praises her:

Many daughters have done nobly, But you have risen over them all.

Loveliness is deceptive and prettiness is vain, a woman who fears YaHUaH is to be praised.

Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates.

Proverbs 31:27-31