What Do You Do When You Don’t Know Where Your Mama Is

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The other day Mom looked at me with a childlike gaze, and in honest concern asked, “What do you do when you don’t know where your mama is?”

The question keeps haunting me. It doesn’t go away. Mom has been asking for her mama for years. So why does her question continue to echo in my thoughts now?

Then today it occurs to me, that the question isn’t just Mom’s question. It’s mine too. What do you do when you don’t know where your mama is?

The mama I could always depend on to sew me anything I needed, bring over a pot of homemade stew just when I needed it, listen longer than I wanted to talk, and care more than anyone.

I deeply love the mama who is still with me. But, what do you do when you don’t know where your mama is?

I guess you grow up. And you prayerfully try to be a mama to your own kids that will be remembered with tears of love someday.

And you depend on God’s strength and grace to help you return love and comfort to the mama you have now, with a heart of gratefulness for the mama she was.

And you continue to treasure the hugs and smiles from the mama that is.

~A memory from six years ago today


  1. Like most people I receive a ton of emails a day – most of them are trashed before I ever open them. When I get an email from you it is the first that I open. Beautiful words don’t spill from my heart like they do from yours. Being able to read your words remind me of my precious mom. Thank you for putting your heart and soul down on paper for so many to read.

    1. Wow, Sarah! Your words are very beautiful to me! I even read them to my husband! Thank you for such sweet encouragement and for blessing my heart! ~Cheryl

  2. Oh, the tears are pooling in the corners of my eyes. Thank you for sharing your memory today. This is exactly where I am today. My sweet Momma begins hospice care this week. I’m actually very grateful for the extra help that I will receive in making the remainder of her journey here on this side of Glory as pleasant as possible. But, your description of your Mom could have been me writing about mine. I miss THAT mother so very much.

    1. Oh I understand, barefootlilylady. And I’m sorry. I remember what mixed feelings I had when my mama started hospice care. I was so grateful for the support and help, and yet so emotional about the end being nearer. God will give you grace and strength. One day at a time. I still had some tender, sweet moments with Mama while she was in hospice. I pray you do as well. God bless~ Cheryl

  3. I am at this stage in my mother’s journey. I so miss her and it’s so sad to see only the shell of the woman she once was. There are days I just want my mama. I know you can relate. Thanks for sharing your journey. It helps to know that others experienced or are experiencing the same emotions that I am. God bless!

  4. Each and every email I receive from you touches me. Thankful I joined your email list. Thank you very much!

  5. I had the privilege to reconnect to an old friend, in fact we were room mates for 24 years. Upon my first visit, I picked up on little things she was doing, not able to sit still and asking me if I knew members of her family waiting for the cup of coffee that was offered but not poured. I asked if she was having memory problems, which she answered back quickly no. I left her home and called a mutual friend and was informed that she had been having difficulty last six months. Last week was missing for 48 hours and was found 60 feet down a railroad track with the train headed her way. My heart just downright hurts for my friend and sad wanting to see my friend as I knew her. The mind is so complicated. She doesn’t remember us leaving together.

    1. I’m sorry, Barb. I totally understand how hard that is. And how scary she was found on a rail road track! I’m assuming they got her off in time and that she is safe. So many challenges!

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