In my mind, my son, Wes, is tall. He is kind and smart and full of sweet mischief. He loves to run. He runs everywhere, down the hall, down the street. Always with a sly grin. Like his dad. He has his dad's eyes and his perfect nose and his lips.
One day while working-out at the gym, I felt some discomfort in my left arm followed by a sharp pain. The next thing I knew, I was looking up at paramedics in an ambulance and the sound of a siren! I had suffered my first heart attack. Life is very unpredictable, isn't it?
Growing up, my understanding of God was always tainted by a negative framing. Through Sunday schools and Friday sermons, I learned that God was watching me, but only later on in life I understood that God was watching over me-- two very different things.
Our relationship with our mom is just different than any other relationship we'll ever have. As a mother of three, I've found this to be true. I am a mom, and with that has come a completely different perspective.
People often comment about how lucky I am to have such a smart son. Yes, I consider myself blessed. But I also know all the challenges, sacrifices and determination that it took to get him to this day.
The relationship between a parent and a child is the weirdest relationship you will ever have. It is close and intimate. It is cold and distant, with hearts raw and broken. And this could vary not by the year or the day, but by the moment.
I'm the mom that sits at Taekwondo tournaments and hopes for the first place that doesn't come. I'm the mom that's been at soccer games and ached inside, wishing that the sheer will of my love for this kid could make a ball float effortlessly from his foot or hand into the goal or hoop.
On Father's Day, 2011, Jake was diagnosed with kidney cancer. It was deemed terminal. Jake went from a young man about to take on the world to someone staring at his expiration date. Then the good part.
I feel grateful to have been raised by such an insightful and beautiful woman, who wanted nothing more than to pass on the magic of her heart and the motivation of her soul. For it's my mother that makes my bright light shine even brighter.