Monday, May 12, 2008

The Impact of a Mom

I have tried to upload the digital story about my mom but the file is too big so I here is the transcript from my digital story. It is not as impressive as the one with the great pictures, but you get the idea. Yesterday was my first Mother's Day without my mom. There were momments that were hard, but for the most part I am doing well.
Here is my story...

Each of us has people in our lives that impact us greatly. For me that person is my mother, my life giver. She has given me life both physically and spiritually. When I look at the many ways that the Lord has shaped and molded me, many of the most influential moments were made possible because of my mother’s presence in my life.
My mother is literally the most selfless person that I know. Throughout her life, service has characterized her. She would do anything for anyone and genuinely had a heart for those in need. The role model that she has been to me is the reason that I am who I am today.
However, God also used my mother’s life to bring me through many challenges. From the time that I was four years old, my mother battled bipolar disorder. She did not believe that she had a mental illness, therefore the many delusions that she had during an episode became very real to her. These delusions even led her to pick me up from elementary school when I was ten with the car packed. As she drove us to the battered women’s shelter, I watched the road signs carefully so that I could call my father and tell him where to pick me up.
When I was 18 and about to leave for college, my mother was placed in intensive care in critical condition. However, this time it was due to kidney failure and the doctors did not believe that she would live. Miraculously, God allowed her kidneys to begin functioning again. After 6 months wheel chair bound in a nursing home she received a necessary hip replacement and returned home.
Although, she continued to battle many medical conditions and in 2005 after more kidney trouble, my mother began dialysis treatments three times a week for four hours each time. Dialysis made a huge difference in her life and she was able to do many things again, including moving back to her lake house where she had previously lived alone.
In 2006, my mom and I spent countless hours planning my wedding. She even meticulously sewed each of my bridesmaids a tote bag by hand. She also truly enjoyed helping me in my first grade classroom. Without her help, I would not have made it through my first few years of teaching. Each day as I open my filing cabinets, I see her handwriting labeling each of my files.
Then in April of 2007, my mom had a stroke and came to stay with us for a few weeks. My husband fondly remembers their great conversations as he came home to eat lunch with her each day and taxi her to dialysis. A few weeks later, she returned home to stay with my sister. Towards the end of May she had another stroke. This time it was necessary for her to go into a nursing home. I put a lot of effort into making her room special and personalized and as I drove her from the hospital to the nursing home, she told me how thankful she was for how I had served her. It was on this day that she had special clarity and I was able to tell her that I had gained all of these qualities from my mother. She was truly surprised to hear this.
In October, my mother went into hospice care and on my husband’s 33rd birthday, November 6, 2007, my mother went to be with the Lord. I miss her so much but more than anything else I am so blessed to have known her. God used my mother, Karen Jean Daniel, in a special way. Even through these difficult circumstances I can see that she was part of an amazing plan and I was drawn closer into the fold of God. Without these trials I am sure that I would not have leaned on the Lord in such a way as I do now.


  1. I love you so much! You are an incredible woman!! :)

  2. Andrea, this was beautifully written and really touched me. I always remember your mother as being a lively, beautiful woman. She will be greatly missed by many. What is crazy is that my due date is your hubby's birthday! What a small world. I can't wait to get back to Texas so we can hang out again. Take care and keep in touch!