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Berdine's Corner

Give Your Mother Her Flowers While She Lives

by Deborah E. Dennard

berdine dennard
Berdine Dillard Dennard

Life Lessons from a Matriarch

This morning, I found myself listening to one of my mama's favorite CDs by Shirley Caesar. One of the songs on this CD really resonated with me, "Faded Rose." In this song, Pastor Caesar tells a heart wrenching story as only she can of a young man who returns home from Germany too late to attend his mother’s funeral. As he stands before her grave, he holds in his hands a single faded rose as he speaks to his mama.

"Petals from this faded rose, mama, is all I have to give, but mama I tried, I tried to make you happy while you lived. If I had a million dollars, I'd line your grave with gold, but that wouldn't wake you from your sleep, as eternity rolls on. Oh diamond rings and silver things, mama, I never had to give, but mama I tried to give you flowers while you lived."

For people who are actually still blessed to have their mothers, I wonder how much effort is really put forth to make them happy while they live. Since my mama passed away in 2008, I have noticed how many people take their mothers for granted. Many don't stay in close communication with their mothers, they don't spend much time with them, and some people actually behave like their mothers are a burden. This not only confuses me, but it also angers me. I would give anything to have my mama lecturing me about how I should live or calling me every day.

Therefore, I have some advice for those of you who still have your mothers. I implore you to take time to show your mother that she is important. You know your mother better than anyone else. You know what makes her happy. Do what it takes to make her happy. It is an investment you will never regret. Don't get so caught up in other things or people that you forget her or make her feel like she is a burden. She is the best friend you will ever have. Make sure you call her every day, if only for a few minutes. If you are in the same city, stop by to see her for a few minutes as often as you can. Take her out for dinner, spoil her with gifts, and seek her advice. Finally, don't just show her you love her, but also, make sure you say the words. Live your life now, so you won't ever have any regrets. Give your mother her flowers while she lives.

As I write this today, I reflect on the life of my mama. Today, August 2, 2011, Berdine Dennard would have been 67 years old. My family and I miss my mama terribly, especially me and my brothers. However, we can honestly say we have no regrets. You see, we didn't wait until she died to show our love for her. She knew we loved her because not only did we tell her, but our actions showed her. We can't stop showing her. That's why there is a Berdine’s Corner. Happy Birthday, Mama!!!


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