You’ve been with the Lord now for over 20 years. You’d think the memories would have begun to fade. That I wouldn’t think of you quite so often. That I wouldn’t continue to imagine how truly happy you must be in the company of Jesus, and how your laughter is, I’m sure, bouncing off the pearly gates. I can see Dad, sitting on a heavenly folding chair, his right boot resting on his left knee, whittling and smiling at you as you visit with Grandpa or Grandma, or Gabriel. He, silent. You, chatting. Some things never change – and in heaven, they just get better.
If it rains there (why not?) I can see you look up from your conversation, scan the horizon to the north – rain on the ranch often came in from the north – and say, “I smell rain.” Then you would smile. Because the approach of rain was always good. It got into your blood – that anticipation of God’s occasional blessing – from an early age. The thing was, most of your growing up years were spent in drought.
The south Texas brush country of your youth was a far cry from a garden paradise. Most of the flora stung, pinched, or scraped, and still does. And yet, you carried the hope of springtime bluebonnets with you wherever you went. There was this little oasis in the middle of that droughty old country, and everyone in Live Oak County knew her name: “Happy.” It was more real, more revelatory of your character than your given name, Evie Brown Reagan Grant. That moniker was way too formal for you, Mom. To this day, you remain the least formal, and yet the most casually elegant woman I have ever known.
I’m so glad you got to meet my sweetheart, Lauren. And to welcome all of your grandchildren into the world. My, how you would dote on your great-grandson, Evan! You’ll get to meet him one day. Until then, he will meet you through stories of my growing-up days down on the rancho magico – where you have to watch out for cactus that can poke, and mesquite trees with their sharp thorns, and nettles that sting.
But where your bluebonnetssunbonnets grow with just a mist of rain, and the whole county can’t forget you. And doesn’t want to.
So, Mom. Thanks for living out your name. And for blessing me with your joy.
“Happy,” happy Mother’s Day!