Five years ago on May 9, 2010, we visited my mom at Potomac Hospital who was suffering from the final stages of lung cancer. Patrick, Eileen, and I wanted to do something meaningful and special – but getting her something was not really an option as she only had weeks or months to live. As it turned out, it was less than two weeks. Anyway, this is what we did:
Happy Mothers’ Day!
For 48 years, you have nourished and nurtured us. At each stage of our lives, you have been there. You provided nutrition when we were infants, you provided security when we were kids, and you provide guidance and wisdom when we were adults. To this day, you continue to enrich our lives. During this illness, you are teaching us how to live with courage, dignity, and strength in the face of adversity.
There are so many moms out there who do not have the tools that you did. Their kids are malnourished, they do not have the means to make their kids feel safe or secure, and they don’t have any reason to promise their kids a better future. They live lives of despair, wishing they had the tools to help provide their children a better future.
In honor of you and all you have done for us, we have purchased a heifer for a family in a developing country. This heifer will provide gallons of milk a day, giving a mother’s children nourishment through milk, cheese, and yogurt. Milk protein transforms sick, malnourished children into healthy boys and girls. The sale of surplus milk earns money for school fees, medicine, clothing and home improvements. They are also required to donate a portion of the milk to neighbors or institutions like orphanages.
In honor of you, some mom’s dream just came true. Some mom will be able to provide for her kids what you were able to do for us. Her despair has been transformed into hope, and her kids will have a better future than she could have ever imagined.
Through this program, the family has to pass on the heifer’s first offspring to yet another needy family. And those families have to pass on the first offspring of those heifers to yet another family. So this gift will help transform generations in a village of a developing country.
Mom – we love you more than words can say. But we hope that this action and the symbolism it represents helps show the profound love we have for you and all you have done for us throughout the years.
Patrick, Eileen, and Michael
PS: After I posted this, a friend suggested I provide the link to the charity we used. It is Heifer International and you can reach their site at http://www.heifer.org/.