Sunday, December 21, 2008

Helen Oldham Olsen

Dale called me this morning but I missed his call since I was in church. He wanted to talk about motherwho passed away three years ago yesterday. Sometimes I get so busy with my life, working a good chuck of the time, and filling the rest of my days with writing, so at times I forget to remember mom. I had to stop and think about her yesterday because a man who commented on Tim's blog wanted to talk to him. Before Tim talks to people he likes to check them out to make sure they're not kooks. He found this guy's ancestral blog wherein he mentioned having some relatives from Paradise, Utah. I was intrigued because his ancestor's last name was Bishop. My great-great grandmother was a Bishop. I went through my PAF program and found his great great grandfather. They were brother and sister. Small world, isn't it?

Anyway, I was thinking that mom would probably know this man. It seemed like she knew everyone that lived in or around Paradise and their children and children's children.She was just that linked in to the community of people there. There was a lot of intermarrying between groups that came from England and settled in Paradise. Anyway, that started me thinking about mom. There wasn't anything that I liked better than to sit in the dining room of the old Paradise home and listen to the stories of ancestors. Mom and Grandma Oldham knew everybody in Paradise and was probably related to about 80% of them. There was always an Uncle Ez or Aunt James or Cousin Lydia that would come around and talk for hours. I just wish I would have been smart enough to write down some of those conversations. Gosh, I miss mom if for no other reason than she knew so much.

After talking with Dale and commiserating about missing our mother, I hung up the phone and cried for quite a while. Sometimes I feel like I'm not being loyal and feel guilty because I don't think about her enough or mourn for her enough. But isn't that the beauty of the gospel? We don't have to sit around in sorrow and anguish because we know where our beloved has gone to and we know that with any luck and a lot of hard work, we'll see them again.

So at this time of Christmas when we remember mom and the Savior and that He was resurrected and made it possible for ALL of us to have that same privilege, let us remember mom, even though her body may rest in the groundshe will once again walk upon the earth, hug each of her children, her grandchildren and her great grandchildren that she didn't have the privilege of meeting while she was here on earth. Isn't that the true meaning of Christmas--the blessings of immortality and eternal life? The blessings of being forgiven, renewed and cleansed from sin? Isn't that the beauty of the gospel? It is, my dear family. I loved my mother very much. She taught me the gospel and expected all of us to live it. Her legacy to us was her capacity to love and her testimony of the truth. When I remember mother, I don't want to sit around and weep and wail, I want to get up and work. I want her to be proud and pleased with my behavior and the things that I accomplish. There is no greater tribute to a mother than to have faithful, righteous children and grandchildren.

Merry Christmas to the Olsen's!

3 comments:

Ruth said...

Wow, that was really beautiful! We too miss Grandma Olsen a great deal but know that she is in a much better place. We hope you had a Merry Christmas and thanks for the card! I was terrible this year and didn't get them out to anyone! Oh well, there's always next year, right? By the way, you look FABULOUS.

CMalone said...

Thanks Ruth for the lovely comment. Yes we did have a lovely Christmas, just the three of us. Mike built me a new computer without our knowledge. What a total and complete shock and surprise. I never thought he had it in him to do something so completely unselfish. Gotta love him!

Olsen Family said...

We also miss Grandma so much, it is crazy to think that was 3 yrs ago. I know she is so happy up there and im sure is having a great time watching all of us. Glad you had a great christmas. Hope all is well.