Today (November 1) is All Saints Day. All Saints Day is the day that we remember and honor our family members and friends who have passed from this life on earth to their eternal home in heaven. Many churches take the first Sunday after All Saints Day to celebrate that day by recognizing their members who have passed and then allowing the congregation to recognize their family members and friends who have passed by calling their name out loud, or perhaps lighting a candle for them. That Sunday in the church calendar year was not one of my favorites. It is a somber, solemn ceremony as names are called, candles are lit and tears flow. In years past, I’ve called out my grandparents, Bernard and Jessie Evans, Nelson and Velma Thompson, aunts and uncles – Ellis and Grace McMichael, Eugene and Nellie Evans, Buddy and Lillie Mae Lands, J. W. Jackson. And my dear cousins, James McMichael, Doug Jackson, and most recent, Tony Reavis.
This year is different. Even though I love all those relatives I listed above, this year I remember my mother. Hazel Thompson Evans. She has been gone just over two months and I miss her more than I ever thought I would. The pain is still great, the grief still runs deep into my soul, my heart is still shattered and a piece of me–that is irreplaceable–is gone. I am grateful that she is no longer in pain and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I will see her again someday in Heaven. But oh, what I would give to have another day, even just an hour, with her.
Mother, you have no idea how much you are missed. I love you.