Try not to let the number of years distract you from my message. I don’t even remember when I wrote it first. The second section, below my picture, is my message to you today.


I’ve been into mother’s stuff again. The second time in 21 years. Nine years ago I looked at some of the things she had left to me. Sorrow consumed me as I sat thinking of lost opportunities to have let her know how much I cared.

I bought a Mother’s Day card, wrote the following note on it. “To Amy, my Mom. To a loving mother from a sorrowful daughter 13 years too late.” In the card is a letter I wrote full of remorse about my not having expressed more appreciation for her talents. Especially her ability to write historical stories, even make-believe stories like her Baretta story.

I could make a quick judgment about the art and often told her they were pretty. But I knew so little about writing and took even less time to appreciate it. Now that I love to write I wish I had shared more of that with her. A section from my letter to her says – “I have thought of you often during the 21 years since you were here. But I think it has always been because I wanted you to see MY accomplishments, MY family, MY home, MY yard, MY Lexus – never because I wanted to share YOUR accomplishments, YOUR family, YOUR house, YOUR yard, YOUR writings, YOUR pictures. Sorry, sorry, sorry.”

Today I am destroying the card. I’ve learned a very humbling lesson. What good is an “I’m Sorry” thirteen years too late. I don’t know what I will remember when I see her again. But I hope I will still have the opportunity in Heaven to say, “Mom, you were an amazing woman when you lived on earth.”

I don’t know whether or not I have shared the message above on a blog before, but even if I did, it is a warning that needs to be considered regularly. Are you holding a grudge against a friend or family member? “I’m Sorry” hits real hard after death. Be generous with your mercy even if the other person was in the wrong. Or maybe it is not hard feelings, just the busyness of life. Or maybe, as in my case, …………I don’t know how to finish this. Maybe because I was wrapped up in me, not her.

Oh my, this transparency is hard. It is only worth it, if it helps you understand

About oneta hayes

ABOUT ME Hello. To various folks I am Neat’nee, Mom, Grandma Neta, Gramma, Aunt Neta, Aunt Noni, Aunt Neno, and Aunt Neto (lots of varieties from little nieces and nephews). To some I’m more like “Didn’t you used to be my teacher?” or “Don’t I know you from someplace?” To you, perhaps, I am a Fellow Blogger. Not “fellow” like a male or a guy, but “fellow” like a companion or an adventurer. I would choose to be Grandma Blogger, and have you pull up a chair, my website before you, while I tell you of some days of yore. I have experienced life much differently than most of you. It was and is a good life. I hope to share nuggets of appreciation for those who have gone before me and those who come after me. By necessity you are among those who come after me and I will tell you of those who came before. Once upon a time in a little house on a prairie - oops, change that lest I commit plagiarism - and change that “house on the prairie” to “dugout on the prairie.” So my story begins...
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14 Responses to HARD LESSON TO LEARN

  1. capost2k says:

    An excellent text on forgiveness is Forgiving What You Can’t Forget by Lysa TerKeurst.
    Great lessons from a woman who had to learn them through her pain.
    ❤️&🙏, c.a.

    • oneta hayes says:

      Thank you for the link. Hope others will see your comment. I don’t think I am taking any unforgiveness issues with me, but like David’s plea to God, I pray that He will reveal anything within me that I need to settle. And He does. Quite recently, today even. Ouch!

      • capost2k says:

        The heart you present in your blog reveals one who knows the Lord’s mercy and grace, and it is rare one so touched by the Master will not be as forgiving as we have been forgiven. Lysa’s book has excellent guidelines for helping others through forgiveness issues as well.
        ❤️&🙏, c.a.

    • Debbie L says:

      Best book to read with your Bible!!! Oh I had much to learn and forgive! Now I can honestly say my mourning turned to morning and now I have JOY every morning I wake!!!

  2. Oneta, this is beautiful. Thank you, and thank you for the warning. So true. I lost my mother a year and a half ago, so Mother’s Day was bittersweet for me this year too. I was able to spend a lot of time with her those last few years, so we had a lot of conversations that I’m glad we had, but even so, there are STILL things I wish I’d told her and apologized for!

    • oneta hayes says:

      I’m glad you took the time to give her attention before it was too late. But our parents take so much knowledge to the grave that would benefit their offspring. I was fortunate to have a mother that wrote a lot, so I find more and more about her as I spend time in her memories. Thank you for your nice response.

  3. This is such a good reminder Oneta….One we should perhaps reread every day!

    • oneta hayes says:

      Once we put it into practice a few times, it will become a routine matter to bring to the Lord. He will lead us to help others day by day. That reminds me, a goal I had today was to call a couple who have been missing from church. It is 11:26 and I didn’t do it. Try, try again. 😀

  4. Dawn Marie says:

    I needed this reminder. And I look forward to reading the article by Lysa (linked above in capost2K’s comment.) God is definitely working on this heart of mine through you….💕

  5. Debbie L says:

    I think so many of us can relate! Too much, especially the me, myself and I part. I’m blessed and so thankful I was able to enjoy mom’s last year without regrets. I had her for almost 67 years. She made it to 96.

    • oneta hayes says:

      I was sixty when my mom passed. Daddy was already gone. I felt like an orphan left as the “elder” in my family since I was the oldest of my cousins and siblings. It was hard. I’m sure losing one’s mother is high in a list of stressful situations.

  6. Adelheid says:

    I will share this to a very good friend of mine. And this is truly a beautiful reminder that if we love and appreciate our mothers, do it now, express it now. Don’t wait when it’s all over. Thank you, Oneta! 😘😘😘

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