December 28, 2019

Walking in my Mother’s Shoes

In Cedarfield tradition, the Pastoral Care Team created this compilation of holiday memoirs by team members and residents. We will share one a day through the holidays. Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Beth Burrell, Team Member

Christmas for my family was filled with excitement, wonder, and faith. Mymother’s walk took many journeys, and I still can remember her telling memany times through my youth and early adult years, “you will understandwhen you walk in my shoes.”

During the Christmas of 1970the one gift I was focused on was aguitar. I don’t remember why, butI do remember going to Sears andgazing at the guitars on the shelvesdecorated for the holidays. Christmasmorning, I felt mom’s reassuringtug to wake up. Christmaswas waiting under the tree. Bothmy younger brother and I rusheddownstairs to find guitars with bigred bows placed under the tree foreach of us. Oh, how we loved our presents! I hate to guess how many hours thatday and months to come we strummed out noisy sounds, sour notes, and silly rockand roll poses with dancing.

If you’re wondering where that leadmusically, neither my brother nor I ever had any skills on anymusical instrument, just fond memories of that year.I realized when my own son came along 20 years later, anythingthat makes loud noises, among everyday parenting, cantest a mother’s patience both mentally and spiritually. But mymom knowingly (I’m sure she had to talk Dad into going along) accepted thesoon-to-be commotion and uproar to the delight of seeing our happy faces thatChristmas.

What I did realize years later with children of my own was what true gifts thoseguitars really stood for — selflessness, giving from the heart, and endurance. Allthese gifts defined the foundation of my own spiritual journey, and not only impactedmy life, but shaped the person I am today. I smile thinking about walkingin my mother’s shoes, experiencing the same wonders, joys, heartaches, parentingchallenges, and the same thankfulness for God’s own gift of assurance and unconditionallove each day.