I am in the basement of my childhood home. I am with my brother and sisters. One of them snatches a box from behind the bar.

I sift through the box. It overflows with cards and notes. My thoughts drift back to the day that I grab my mom’s birthday card from her bedroom dresser. Only to discover,  her own scribbled love message inside the card that we had gifted her….devoted to us…….her five children.

It foreshadows this moment.

I grab a small white address book that is resting between the cards.

Inside the front cover I run my fingers over my mom’s handwriting, “Colleen gave this to me one Christmas. I could never throw away.”

I have no memory for this little book. I must have been too small to remember.

I flip through it.

On the back cover I find two quotes:

“What the heart has once owned, it shall never lose.”

“Where there is love, there is no labor.”

My mom prepares these remembrances for us. This of course, I inadvertently discover the day I swipe her birthday card off of her dresser to read. The day has come that we all will need them.

My husband sees love as work. In my confusion to decipher just why he sees love so toilsome, my marriage has become laborious, and thus divorce is eminent.

I remember reading a parenting book by Dr. Stephen Covey. In one chapter, Covey’s daughter speaks of the way her mother and father celebrate her birthday. It is a week long, grand celebration with each day bringing something special with it. All nine of the Covey children enjoy this loving deluge.

Covey’s daughter goes on to explain what a shock it is once she marries. It seems her husband does not share the same, week long enthusiasm for all things birthday.

I do not know what drew me to someone who does not recognize the ease of love.

For even in illness and death, our mom discovers a way to let her love travel towards us.

She simply couldn’t find enough ways to tell us she loved us.

I always say that loving people just isn’t that complicated.

A better way to say it………

Would be in the verse that my mom lived in life……………

“Where there is love, there is no labor.”





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