As we celebrate our mothers this Sunday, May 10th, we will do so in our own ways, depending upon individual circumstances and situations. I will be one of those daughters who honors her mother with memories – having done so since her passing eight years ago.
I have many fond recollections that include her love of peonies, her excitement when something good happened in her life or the lives of her loved ones, and - when I became adult – her love of sitting down with me for margaritas on the rocks with salt at her favorite Mexican restaurant.
But one memory that is making a deep impression on me today are the times my mother worried unnecessarily about me or the world in general. One question she posed often and continues to echo in my mind is, “What is this world coming to?”
She would often reference that question to the worry she carried within her about how people treated one another – and at times - the concern about the youth – whether the future held a bright promise for them (and thus her children). I, of course, dismissed her concerns as any know-it-all and highly idealistic daughter would. “We are going to be fine – just fine,” I often told her.
If Mom were alive today, I suspect she would wonder with more intensity and frequency what the world is coming too. As I walk into my own middle-age, that question begins to bubble up in my own psyche from time to time. However, just as I am about to give up on the world, there is always something that – or someone who - converts my unnecessary worry and judgment about the status of the world into joy and trust of a beautiful life that exist now with an even better future in store.
In the four years at The Windham Eagle newspaper, meeting and interviewing many people in the community, I have been reminded time and time again that although - yes, these are crazy times (always have been and most likely always will be) there are also so many delightful and exquisite surprises that still remain.
The most recent “savior” in my glass half-full perception shift is 9-year-old Byron Davis of Windham and his family. (See front page for story at http://frontpage.thewindhameagle.com/2020/05/byrons-bloom-bombs-explode-with.html ). This innovative young student has made a huge impact on the world around him by the simple gesture of giving away over 900 homemade paper seed discs to essential workers that include everyone from medical staff to grocery store cashiers.
Although his mission is to serve a specific group of individuals, what this third-grade student may not realize is that this seemingly minor act creates a ripple effect beyond his targeted goal, touching individuals far and wide, including this small-town newspaper writer.
No matter what this world is coming to, with all the Byron Davises that dot this big round globe, how can one be discouraged? How can one worry about our future?
They say what you focus upon becomes the reality in your life. I have never claimed to know the whole truth or to own the copyright on it, but my curiosity has the best of me. What would happen if we dedicated our thoughts to ways we could improve the world for others – and in doing so, improve our own lives.
If my mother had the opportunity to meet or to know of Byron, my guess is that she might still ask, “What is this world coming to?” But instead of asking the question out of concern, it would be in the form of a statement that carries with it a peace of mind.
Perhaps the greatest honor I could offer to the memory of my mother, is to forever be changed by the act of one person.
Happy Mother's Day!