I really can’t believe that today, November 17, 2023, marks twenty years since my mother passed away. The time has gone so quickly. Maybe it’s hard to grasp the fact that so many years have gone by because I still think of her every single day and I continue to powerfully feel her presence in my life.

I wrote this letter to my mom this past Mother’s Day. I share it with you today to celebrate a life that was so well lived, and to express my deep gratitude for the legacy my mother left me and our family.

Twenty years later, I still miss you, mom. Today and always.

A Mother’s Day Letter
By Andrea Christensen Brett 2023

Dear Mom
I know you’re not with me here
I mean here
Physically on earth

But I want you to know
You are
Sometimes it amazes me
How much
You are here

You’re here in my kitchen
As I add a little extra salt
And as I only use real butter
And as I throw a meal together
Out of nothing
Before everyone else even has time
To change out of their Sunday clothes
And get back to the kitchen

You’re here in any wise words
I may pass on
Because they are words you said
To me
I may not have liked them at the time
And you probably didn’t think
I was even listening
I was

You’re here when I take dinner to a neighbor
Or tie a ribbon on a gift for a friend
You’re here when I go to my armoire
To choose something from the
Little stash of treasures –
I have on hand

You’re here when my heart goes out
To so many places
My hands can’t be

You’re here when I do dishes
Even when I don’t feel like it
Or when I go to church
Even when I don’t feel like it
Or when I do any good or
Right thing
Even when I don’t feel like it

You’re here when I get up early
And stay up late
To do work no one sees
Or probably even cares about

You’re here when I decorate a table
Or a room
Or a house
You’re here in bold colors
And risky choices
A touch of red
You were Pinterest
Before there
Was Pinterest

You’re here when I try to win the heart
Of a grandchild who hasn’t quite taken to me yet
I remember how creative you got
And the bond you made
With Beanie Babies

You’re here every time I take the dog for a walk
You weren’t a dog person yourself
But you didn’t let that stop you
From letting me be one

You’re here when I write
When I craft words
Because word order matters
You’re here when I get nervous
To play the piano
But I do it anyway
You’re here when
I create

You’re here in the books I read
In the messy underlining
And the scribbles in the margins
You’re here in my scriptures
In my love for the word of God
And my desire to dig
More deeply for Him there
To find the words
That will change me
And hopefully
Help me be more like Him

You’re here when I try to
Let others have their path
Because it’s a long time
Before that final score
Comes in

You’re here
When I try my best
To let love be the answer
No matter what
The question is

You’re here when I sit quietly
Observing the room full of people
And overwhelmingly
Feeling them
There’s so much I could say
But I don’t say it

You’re here when I shop for clothes
And gravitate to black
Mom, we always teased you for
Writing the “Book on Modesty”
But I want you to know
I still read it

You’re here in my mirror
It seems I see you there
More every day
It’s you looking back at me
And I’m not gonna lie
Sometimes it kinda freaks me out

You’re here in my melancholy
My cheers for the underdog
My pathetic sentimentality
My fear of missing out
On anything

You’re here when my heart
Is in so

You’re here when I cry
Because I miss the days
When our children were little
And underfoot
And riding shotgun to lessons and ballgames

You’re here when I ache
For the times our family shared music
By the hours and days and years
You’re especially here for all of that, Mom
And I get it now
And I’m so sorry I wasn’t
More sensitive to you and your heart
As we all left the nest to
Fly on our own

You’re here when I judge myself too harshly
For judging you too harshly
There were so many things
I didn’t know then
That I know now
So many things my soul
Has told you I’m sorry for
And I know you’ve forgiven me for it all
And I thank you
Thank you

Dear Mom
It seems I can’t escape you
Not that I’m trying to escape you
But it is
And always will be
Such a mystery to me
How, even after all these years
I can miss you so much
When you are
And always