If I think of the word “Mother”, everyone without exception will feel a tugging at his heart. Maybe he will remember the love his mother gave at a difficult point in his life, and know the sacrifice his mother made with her love. My mother was no exception.
My mother was the second daughter among 2 brothers and 4 sisters, but played the role of breadwinner of the family. After my grandfather, who was a train station master, was kidnapped by North Korean soldiers during Korean War, she worked as a teacher of a junior high and paid for her brothers to go to school. After she married my father, she had three children including myself. Under the challenging financial situation of my family, if she had a daughter, she would have had someone to help her with house chores and have a conversation with. It probably was not easy to raise three sons by herself.
My father was not a warm person. Instead, I do not remember seeing any affection between my parents. My father always slighted her, hurt her with his words, shouted at her, and if she talked back to him, he became very angry to break some furniture. Not very often, but he even physically hit her. My mother probably did not have any warm feelings for my father and I wonder how she put up with him. Probably she was thinking of her children.
My father never showed any affection to my mother until the day he died, but when father was diagnosed with the last stages of stomach cancer and a few days later lose his consciousness, she never left his side, and nursed him till the end. If he showed any signs of regaining conscious even a little, she would ask him “Say something. Say you are sorry. That I did great. Say one word just to thank me.” But in the end, he left her without another word. But my mother says she feels sorry for him and does not blame him at all.
A mother’s sacrifice is different from a father’s. I know this when I look at my wife. If my daughter gets hurt or is facing a difficulty, I think everything will turn out alright and can sleep well, but she will stay awake all night long with heavy heart. If my child is ill, I say all children will go through sickness and will be okay, but my wife says that she would rather be sick than her child and has difficult time with it. Some husbands will complain that why does the church not do anything during Father’s Day, but I think the fathers have nothing to complain about. I do not think that fathers have the same rights to be honored as mothers.
But we fathers should not despair. Because it is not our, or father’s fault, but that God made us that way. God split the duties of raising the children between husbands and wives. He gave a tough character to fathers to set the direction of the home, teach and train the children. He gave a loving character to mothers to sacrifice for her children, and to protect them and love them no matter what the circumstances. He probably split it because these two characters of God could not have been handled by humans by themselves, and also for a married couple to combine their strength to raise the children.
Today is Mother’s Day. I salute all mothers representing all children. Thank you for raising us. Happy Mother’s Day!!
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