Kristy Byers

Kristy Byers

Monday, August 8, 2011

Mother's Day

I know Mother's Day was a few months ago and my mother recently passed away, but here are some of my thoughts on Mother's Day. I hope it touches your heart at it has touched mine.

Mother’s Day

I hate to admit this, but I have always hated Mother’s Day. For two reasons, first I’ve always wanted to be a mother and second, my mother, well, I don’t think she enjoyed being a mother of young children. Don’t misunderstand me, she loved me and would do anything for me, but she didn’t seem to like “kid” things. So finding the right card or gift for her is always a struggle. Especially the card, they are all very sentimental. That is not the relationship I had or ever had with my mother. That was not my mother’s way.

Don’t get me wrong, I know my mother loves me and me her, but she’s just not the lovey dovey type. Never has been. My father and I are amazed that as Parkinson’s has taken over her mind and her sensibility, that the only thing she seems to want to do in her “hallucinations” is to get in the floor and play with me. She either wants to have a tea party with me or play dolls or “make something” with me. All things she never did or would ever consider doing when I was a child.

As an adult child, I can say that she became my friend. I told her everything, well almostJ, and I called and chatted with her often. When I accepting the call to the ministry, she was certain I would end up giving birth in a hut in Africa. I don’t think she ever imagined me performing, doing Christian theater, teaching drama and evangelism at a Bible College, or being a stand-up comedian. (To be honest, neither did I.) All things she had no interest in, actually as adult women, we couldn’t have been more different.

I am 46 years old this year, another reason I hate mother’s day. I never had kids, never had the choice, and my cut off age was 45. I never married. (Didn’t say I was never in love.) I always wanted a baby; actually I wanted 5 to 7. I even have some little pink and blue outfits in a “hope” chest. So each year, Mother’s Day is very hard.

Isaiah 54:1-2 says: “Sing, O barren women, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate women than of her who has a husband says the Lord. Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back: lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.” I believe there is such a thing as being a spiritual mother to someone. I have had many children in my life. Close to a thousand, through missions, church, teaching GA’s, Acteens, Sunday School, being a youth minister, working at a day care, even teaching in the public school system or children of my close friends. And after being at the day care, I have even had the chance to watch them grow from 6 weeks old to 3 or 4 years old. Children I have prayed over, and loved until it hurt. I have had friends who have shared their children with me and that has truly been a gift. I enjoy taking Hannah and Caroline Johnson to the library and shopping and to CiCi’s pizza. Before I moved to Columbia, I loved spending time with CJ, Ryan and Ethan Maltba. Last December, I had hooked back up with the Maltba boys and their mother through Facebook, and was invited to Ryan’s graduation party from USC. When I walked in the boy’s faces lit up. They hugged me and we “remembered” when. Ethan, who I used to watch kick the giant Oxford Bible that laid on his mother’s belly, before he was born, and make us both laugh and giggle during church, said to me “Miss Kristy, I don’t remember much, I was very young, but I do remember that I love you.” At that moment, I don’t think I ever loved him more. And before the night was over, he took me on the dance floor and dance with me. I hadn’t dance with anyone is over 20 years. Needless to say I cried all the way home. And as Facebook has made it possible to reconnect with so many kids that I have taught, or were their youth minister, or I have helped raise in one capacity or another, I am blessed to see them love the Lord. Even though we have all made mistakes and been through some stuff. It is a blessing to keep up with them and to still feel loved by them.

The Wagler children, Emma and Nathan, who call me “Aunt Kristy” have been important to me. Emma is the only newborn (as in 15 mins old, not yet bathed) baby I have every held. She will always hold a special place in my heart. Emma and her brother Nathan spent most of the childhood as missionary kids in England. But her mother, and my life long friend, made sure I was part of their lives.

The other night, I was watching Maddie McMillion at church for a few minutes while her father and mother took care of some business. I have known Maddie since she was about 4 or 5 months old. I moved into a new class at the day care every time she moved. She is precious to me. I was playing with her on the playground and she kept saying “remember when we___________” and “remember the time we ______________”. We didn’t play long and her mother called for her to go home. I was holding Maddie’s hand as we walked across the parking lot and she looked at me and said, “We didn’t get to play very long Miss Kristy. When am I going to get to play with you again?”

As she said that, my mother popped into my head. The thought of her, not in her right mind, trying to play with me, an imaginary child to her now, and I was grateful and sad. Sad that I don’t have memories of playing with my mother, that my mother seems to trying to relive something she never had, and I was grateful. Grateful for the memories I do have with my mother. We baked cookies together every year at Christmas, she taught me to sew, and every Saturday she would take her apron and tie it around my neck like a bib so I could eat my Chef Boyardee spaghetti and meatballs for lunch, and not mess up my clothes before we went somewhere. (Usually shopping.)

I was also grateful for all the kids in my life, who I have colored with, taught their ABC’s to, sang songs with, and most importantly played with. My tent has been extended and I’m glad that the tent came with swings, and crayons and playdough. Shopping trips, pool times, helping with school projects, or service events. Children who have accidently called me Momma, but who always call me Miss Kristy. I don’t know about you, but I feel a play date coming on.

My tent is wide indeed.

With Love and Laughter,


Saturday, April 16, 2011

He this is my new blogspot. I didn't change the old one which was to a gmail account soon enough. So I created this new one. Here we go!