I picture a beautiful woman who has brown piercing eyes that have always sensed when I was in need. Like the time years ago when I was first married and she stopped by to just see how I was doing. She noticed while she was there that my cupboards were not completely full of groceries. While I was gone to work the next day she stocked my kitchen full of wonderful goodies for me and my husband to come home to complete with a new knick knack that looked just right sitting in the kitchen window.
I also picture my cheerleader to have worn hands that have served so many over the years. Whether it be mending someone's jeans or baking a pie or babysitting her grand children or running a gift to someone that needs to be cheered up or picking up a heart broken daughter to take her to get a Pepsi max and just visit. Always reaching out with those incredible giving hands to pull you in and hug you like no one else can and tell you that everything is going to be okay.
I also picture my cheerleader to have a loud magnetic voice…one that was used well to call us to dinner and family prayer. Also one that was used to cuss out the umpire when he made a bad call against her daughter in a ball game and almost got thrown out of the park. One that was used to chuckle under her breath as she watched her six year old daughter try to build a refrigerator out of wood that she was bound to make and send to her grandmother for Christmas. But also one who could gently sing her babies and grandchildren to sleep.
Another attribute of my cheerleader are ears that could always hear important things. Like the sleigh bells as Santa and his team of reindeer soared ever so close to our home. The whimpers of her children as they faced disappointments in their lives. The stories of all our achievements and great successes that we experienced. And even the time when she thought we were calling her name and she realized it was our family cat that sounded like she was saying “Mom.”
Then my cheerleader has the smile and laugh of an angel. Laughs that were heard as her children sang funny songs in their operatic voices and off tune birthday renditions. Laughs as her grandson race by her on his bike without training wheels at age three yelling, “Watch me Nanny.” Ballet productions that occurred every year for our family’s Christmas programs. Smiles and laughs as her daughter starred as one of the out spoken step daughters in a production she wrote of Cinderella or Footloose and Fancy Free. She would just stand in the background and admired with a smile the accomplishments of her children and husband.
Then last but not least my greatest cheerleader would have a heart that would love like no other. Times when she would see one of her children crying or discouraged and always have a way to wipe away the tears and send us out to face the world with a great reassurance that we were invincible and could achieve anything. Even though after we left she would sit alone and cry for her children because she didn't want to ever see us hurt or broken by the world. The unconditional love that she showed others and myself always despite our foolish mistakes and choices. She saw me as God would see me and always knew my potential.
Now these are the things I see in the greatest cheerleader I have ever known. Finally it is my turn to cheer you on Mom and tell the world what a great success you were and are!! To all those who knew my Mother I have no doubt you have been touched by her constant care and to you that just are reading this and didn't get to know this great woman and cheerleader and mother, I know without a shadow of a doubt that as my mother goes on in eternity that she will continue to cheer us on and we will continue to feel her love and presence in our lives. If there was ever a great victory to be celebrated it is the life of my mother who by mere example shaped us to be the people we are today. I will continue her great legacy and one day we will celebrate the victory together... until then Mom I LOVE YOU and lets go team!!