Over the last few days I’ve heard my mother described as full of life. I think that’s true. But it’s an enormous understatement. Every single thing she did, she did to the fullest possible extent. I can think of 100 examples and I’m sure everyone here can, too.
But the best example is her devotion to us, her children. She would do anything in the world to protect all of us, no matter what her personal cost was to her. I know there were so many sacrifices that she made for us that we’ll never know about.
That’s why I was lucky to call her my mom. I am who I am today and I’ll become whoever is that I will become in large part because she was my mom. The same is true for Jack and Emma Claire. She has been a lighthouse to all of us. The point of guidance, when we feel lost and we aren’t sure what the right thing to do is, she’ll always be that source of light to us I know pointing in the right direction.
Every lesson that she has taught us has become part of our ethic. All the grace and strength that she showed during her own life will hold us up in the hard days we face in our own lives. Every smile and every hug she gave us will pass onto her own children. My greatest hope and the greatest ambition that I can think of, is that we will each honor her by being the people that she taught us to be, and that by doing that, she’ll live on in each of us.
As you can imagine and as Glen mentioned, it was really hard to think of what to say today, because she is usually the one who that tells me what to say. Also, there aren’t words that are good enough. I thought about what she said want to do and what she would want and as always, I knew that she would want to be the one comforting us.
I know that some of you know that but for many years my mom has been writing to her children a letter with words of wisdom for us when she passes away and we live on. I hope she doesn’t mind, but I’m going to read some of that to you. I know that she wrote it for us, her children, but I believe everyone here and beyond she considered part of her family. I think this part at least applies to all of you. I’m going to try to get through this so bear with me.
These are her words she wrote. “I’ve loved you in the best ways I have known how. I lament my short comings more than you know for when I was less than I could have been, should have been, you did not get all that you deserved from me.
"For all I’ve said about life, I want you to know that all I ever really needed was you, your love, your presence to make my life complete. You are a complete joy to me. I hope you will always know that wherever I am wherever you are. I have my arms wrapped around you."
Some of you may know Emma, Jack and I ended every conversation with our mom by saying I love you more. And she always responded, no, I love you more. As you can imagine, none of us ever won that battle. But today I have the honor of being the last to say, mom, I really, really love you more.
It’s almost impossible not to fall to pieces when hearing Cate’s beautiful words about her mother, feeling the love and strength that they shared…
Do it every day if you can, because some day you’ll realize you never could never do it enough, but today especially, don’t forget to say, “mom, I really, really love you more!”