Happy Mother’s Day!
Even though I feel the greeting card companies have created this day to sell stuff, and it worked, I still like to reflect on this day. If you read the blog regularly, 11315 miles was created and dedicated for the purpose of honoring my mother Karen Ellen Dennis Mastromonico by celebrating one mile for every year of life. I have been walking, hiking, running and cycling for a while now in honor of her memory. It has been an adventure participating in different events, celebrating the joy of life in the memory of someone who died so young.
Like most women (moms) I decided to treat myself to a little Barnes and Noble from time to time. I surely don’t need Mother’s Day to buy books and it only becomes better when I have my monthly free café drink. There I was walking the tables stacked high with books, with many of the tables touting various slogans ~ Mom will love this for Mother’s Day, Books only a Mom could love, or Books of Inspiration. I rounded this one table and there were all sorts of girl power books. For some reason I was feeling the girl power and came across books with quotes from famous women and then there in the middle of the table was the book, Mother Teresa, Her Essential Wisdom. I am fascinated by nuns and who better to read about than Mother Teresa. I was particularly interested because I had read a story a while back that for the last 50 years of Mother Teresa’s life, she struggled with a dark presence in her faith. It really is an amazing story. She mentioned that she had a calling within a calling, to serve the poor and the unloved. It is hard to imagine that she dealt with a dark side of faith with such a strong calling to serve the poor. I find it fascinating that some women have this calling and give up so much to serve others.
Mother Teresa was the founder of the Order of the Missionaries of Charity. She was born in what is known as modern day Macedonia but spent most of her life as Mother Teresa of Calcutta. A funny story about the Missionaries of Charity. While Pope Saint John Paul II was alive I was fortunate enough to get tickets to the Pope’s Easter mass at St. Peter’s Basilica. Pope John Paul II was in failing health and was relegated to a wheelchair. When we showed our tickets to the usher, who looked like CIA, we were led down the main aisle towards our seats. I was a little embarrassed as we kept moving forward. I thought surely at any moment we would tuck into a pew. Nope, kept going forward passing people who were now staring. The closer we got to the altar I was really embarrassed. Why are we so close? The next thing I know the nice gentleman sat us down in the seats that surrounded the altar. In other words it was like stage seating at a concert. I couldn’t believe it. Finally, the church began to fill and there were priests and nuns all around us. The priests looked the same but the nuns all had on different garments of their order. Well lo and behold a group of nuns sat behind us that were talking and laughing like teen-aged girls. I turned around and it looked like there were 12 Mother Teresa’s behind me. It was quite a sight. They were pumped and when they wheeled Pope in, the house came down. It was their rock concert.
The mass began and if you ever have been to a Catholic Mass you know we get our exercise. Up, down and kneel. We weren’t in a pew but folding chairs and I was constantly getting bumped or pushed by the people behind me. It was starting to get a little annoying until I realized that one of the nuns behind me was so short she couldn’t see. She was jumping and tucking her head in between to see past me. She couldn’t have been more than 4 feet and some change. When I turned to look at who was making all that commotion she just gave me this electric smile filled with so much joy and a mouth full of some other language of which some words that spilled out in broken English ~ I’m sorry. I realized that this was her event. I spoke and gestured to her and her friend “let’s change seats” and I thought they were going to explode as they muscled me and my daughter out of the way. They wasted no time switching and there I was in the middle of the Order of the Missionaries of Charity. It was quite the experience. Women are tough…even if they’re small.
I was able to get in a sampler of miles this week. I ran, cycled and walked. The weather was rainy and cycling had to be indoors. On Saturday I went for a nice hike on the Mt. Vernon trial. It was hot an muggy but all the trees are flowering and the wild flowers are gorgeous. I finished 29.08 for the week leaving me with 5,952.18 gratefully remaining. If you are celebrating Mother’s Day and your mother is living, never miss a moment to let her know how much you love her. Even if it is just a simple text. Life has a way of changing quickly. I leave you with this:
The woman is the heart of the home. Let us pray that we women realize the reason of our existence: to love and be loved and through this love become instruments of peace in the world.
~ Saint Teresa of Calcutta
Happy Miles to You!! This song seemed appropriate for those who have lost their Moms, written by John Lennon, Julia, who passed away in 1958..