Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Ode to My Mother

Today's guest blogger is my dear friend Cherry.
Cherry was one of my first blog friends and has been so supportive of all of my crazy blogging projects...and this one is no exception! She loves to blog about Motherhood over on her blog. She is all heart, and I am so blessed to have her as a friend!
Here is Cherry...

Oh, how I love talking about my journey as a mother. It is a gift from God. How this noble calling brings a lot of fun, challenge and excitement into my life. If I had to live my life once more, I would still love to be born to my Mom and Dad, marry my husband, Alan, and be blessed with daughters who sometimes give me a headache but most of the time bring joy into my heart and into my life.

Due to my very demanding schedule as a full-time wife to my husband-Alan, mother to two beautiful and smart girls-Geri [141/2y/o] and Shelley [11y/o], Registered Nurse, teacher both at home and in our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a friend, church organist and more!! I had a hard time deciding what topic to share with you in this wonderful, month-long celebration of family.
But then, I thought of a very special person who has indeed taught me through her great life experience how I can be the kind of person I am now and the kind of mother God expects me to be. She truly lives a righteous life so she can "perform the sacred duties and responsibilities God has commanded parents to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, to teach them to love and serve one another." 

That person is my Mother.

My Mother did not have a convenient life, but she proved that in spite of life's hardships and trials it is possible to obey God- to raise good children and righteously provide for their needs both temporally and spiritually. Her[my parents] wise and good choices brought forth “blessings that will perpetuate beyond the grave” in the eternities to come with fruits that can be enjoyed forever by her[their] posterity.
Last summer, I had the opportunity to go home in the Philippines to visit my Mom and Dad. After 6 long years since we came here in the States, this is the first time I would see my parents again. It was a very long trip, my parents did not probably notice the excitement in my tired, haggard face. Although I noticed that my parents were not as young as I think of them anymore. I also found out that my mother was sick causing her to lose a lot of weight. I realized that the time has come that I will be the one taking care of them already. Somehow my vacation plans changed. I was there for a different purpose: which is to serve them, to take care of them and to comfort them. To let them feel how grateful I am for the sacrifices they've made to raise me and my brother, to provide for our needs, temporally and spiritually, when we were still young.
We were in and out of doctors' clinics seeking for the best medical advice and treatment to all the symptoms my mother was suffering. It was heart-breaking to see her suffer physically and emotionally as well. Until my time was almost over and I had not really seen any improvement in her condition, It was hard to leave her in that situation. A few days before I left the Philippines, my mother managed to write me a letter. It was a very emotional but very loving and inspiring letter. [Please allow me to share her exact words, translation is added for the part that she expressed in our language.]
To my ever dearest Cherry,
I hope you'll treasure this book and everything that is written in it. I got the inspiration of doing this from the talk of Sister Susan W. Tanner-Young Women General President. The title of her talk is "Did I tell you?"
I know there were many things that I did not tell you and there are many things that I must tell you. Perhaps I did not tell you that you are very precious and very dear to me.
I won't forget the day when you were born, "halos hindi ka pa naitataas ng Midwife ay "umuuha'' ka na ng napakalakas at sinabi nga ng Midwife na babae ang aking anak ay may kakaibang ligaya sa aking puso kahit medyo nahirapan ako sa pagle"labor''. [I wont forget the day when you were born, you were already crying loudly as soon as you got out of my womb and when the Midwife told me that my baby was a girl there was an unexplainable feeling of joy in my heart amidst the difficulty felt during labor and delivery.]

There are many good memories about you worth remembering-like one time when you and your brother were still very young and small, I was feeding you and Ramon, "sobra kayong makulit kaya nagalit ako, iniwan ko kayo, inilagay ko ang pagkain sa medyo mataas na lugar, pero pagbalik ko ay kumakain na kayo at ikaw pa ang nagsusubo sa kapatid mo. Nang makita ko ang tagpong yun ay napangiti na lang ako." [I got angry because both of you won't sit still to eat. So I stopped feeding you, put the food on top of the table and left the room. When I finally decided to come back I saw you holding the food and you were even the one feeding your older brother, that scene put a smile on my face.]
You decided early to go to school. You were not yet six years old when we enrolled you in first grade. Your love for your studies, waking up early just to continue reviewing for a test even when you were still in grade school, then the same thing in High school, and even more when you were in Colloge, esp. when you were preparing for the Board exam, then CGFNS[Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools] and TOEFL/TSE tests.
I admire you more when you are the Relief Society President in your ward and in your stake. I sometimes wondered where you were getting your strength to perform all your duties, but then I know for sure the Holy Ghost was with you always-lagi nga kitang pinagmamalaki sa mga members.
You have always been a good daughter, a good mother to your two kids, and a good wife too. I'm always thankful that you've been active in the church. I knew even when you were still single you did all your best to keep the commandments and the standards of the church. I know that you really valued all our Lord's teachings that's why you had overcome even the biggest temptation that came into your life.
Being your mother I can feel how much love our Heavenly Father and our Lord Jesus Christ have for you.
When you gave birth to your two daughters esp. to Shelley I didn't tell you how much fear and pain I had felt because I knew that you had a hard labor and delivery, but I had never seen any trace of hardship on your face and countenance and the more I have admired you for that.
I dont remember a time that you had ever complained about our very poor living condition (when you and Ramon) were still growing up. I have always wished I could have done more for you and Ramon when both of you were still growing up.

It seems like she never had a chance to finish this letter, she was very weak and sick during that time. She truly has a good heart. I see "Charity--which is the pure love of Christ" in her actions. She would still think of my father's welfare and our welfare even if she was already sick. I wanted to dedicate this post to my mother to let her know that she has done more than what is needed. She didnt have to wish for it, because she actually did it and is still doing it.

I know that she will live long to behold and witness the fruits of her hard be the best great- grandmother to her great- grandchildren. As the Prophet Joseph Smith said to the women of the Relief Society in April of 1842 "If you live up to your privilege, the angels cannot be restrained from being your associates."

She has been serving as a Relief Society President , in the branch or in the District since I was young. In fact, she is currently the District Relief Society President. Growing up, I saw her life spent in simplicity and righteousness. I never heard her complain to my Dad about our poor life. She lived the gospel of Christ that is taught at church to improve her life and her family’s future.

You see, motherhood [parenthood] is like a chain reaction, it is imperative that we perform it righteously bridging to stronger links in the family. “The Family is ordained of God.” He is the author of successful marriages and families. Whatever circumstances in life that we may be in, it is possible to obey God’s commandments, to raise good children and strengthen families. We are all His children, and He wants us to come back to His presence which is “made possible through the sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples.”

Her most treasured legacy: it is MOTHERHOOD.


Thank you, Cherry!

Now it's YOUR turn to link-up your Family Proclamation posts.
Sadly, this is our last link-up for our Family Celebration!
Many thanks to all of you who have added so much to our month-long blog party!

And here are the party favors for this final week of our celebration!

Family for Time and  Eternity vinyl lettering wood mini-sign READY TO SHIP

"Family: for time & eternity" wooden sign

Personalized Family Night Magnet Set

Personalized FAMILY NIGHT Magnet Set

Family Home Evening Jar - PDF

Family Home Evening Jar - PDF

Love Is Spoken Here - 5 x 7 in Pink

"Love Is Spoken Here" Print

Young Women's Virtue charm bracelet

Young Women's Virtue Charm Bracelet

Family Home Evening Manuel - PDF file

2010 Family Home Evening Manual - PDF
"I Know My Savior Lives"
by Becca Stoker of Just Beccuz

To win one of these lovely party favors, simply comment or link-up all this week.

And as always, please remember to check out Chocolate On My Cranium
and be sure to THANK MONTSERRAT for bringing us all together for this wonderful celebration!


  1. that is a beautiful post and you are a beautiful daughter. it is obvious you honor your mom and respect her experiences and the wisdom she is able to give you. Bless you and your mom...and it's no wonder the Lord sent you daughters. You will be a fine example to them, carrying on in your mom's footsteps. thank you

  2. What a wonderful tribute to your mother. I think we should all be more vocal about the love and admiration we have for one another as a whole, but especially to those who have shown us how to be a righteous woman in these latter-days. Thank you for your beautiful words!

  3. I love that your mother took the time to tell you how wonderful you are and how much she loves you? I think we need to hear that kind of stuff from our Moms...

  4. What a beautiful letter that I am sure you will treasure always. Mothers are so incredibly important.

  5. How incredibly sweet! She's not even my mom and she made me all teary:) Moms are the best!!

  6. lovely thoughts, like the title...did I tell you. Something we all moms and dads need to write down, especially our testimonies.

  7. I too loved the special letter from yor mom. I still have letters from my parents and read them when I come across them. I think every child needs to get a special letter from their mom or dad. You put on paper what you may not say in person, and you get to hold onto it.
    I loved your post!! Mothers are so dear, and I love the greeting she gabe to you, "My Ever Dearest Cherry".
    Thank you!

  8. What a beautiful tribute to such a wonderful woman!

  9. That was a touching letter, and I believe a great woman. You must have been prompted to make that visit, and blessed to follow it.

    Thanks for sharing so personal a story.

  10. Jocelyn I just wanted to let you know that you won the second prize, the vinyl wall art, on my blog! Please send me your address and contact information (like a phone number and an email) and I'll have the artist send it to you. My email is heatherlady at Congrats!

  11. Hi Sisters.This is CHerry.Thanks for all your warm thoughts and comments...

    @ Lindsey the Muse-r, i cant stop crying when i read that because she is not really vocal with her feelings to me.

    @deila-yes i was prompted to make that visit...i was already planning to cancell that visit for some reason but then my husband told me to go and i'm glad that i went.She actually did not tell me that she was sick- i thought it was nothing really serious but then as time went by that i was there, the symptoms were getting serious...My Dad even ask me to read to her her patriarchal blessing because she is kind of getting frustrated--little did i know that reading the patriarchal blessing will be for my own comfort and assurance when i come back to NY-being million miles away from her..

    @Jocelyn-thanks for all your love, patience and support.I Love you friend!

  12. I hope the best for Cherry's Mother. She sounds as if she has given her greatest love and legacy to her daughter.

  13. I really loved the line "motherhood is like a chain reaction, it is imperative that we perform it righteously bridging to stronger links in the family." Thanks for sharing.

  14. Thanks for a great month. (And thanks for adding me into the blog hop.)

  15. I really needed to read this tonight! I had some pretty frustrating motherhood moments this evening and I tell you, I wanted to give up! This was a good pick-me-up. Thank you.