In Praise of my Mother


My mother is gifted. She is an artist who works in various media: calligraphy, watercolor, music. She’s a beautiful singer. My mother also has the gift of giving gifts. Gift-giving is her love language. She’s always very thoughtful about choosing gifts that delight me.

Recently, I’ve been thinking about all the treasure that is stored up in heaven for my mother. She has given so much of her life in service to others that I am amazed. Even recently, I’ve watched her conscientiously prepare Sunday school lessons for young children and Bible studies for a group of older women who come to meet weekly in her home. Last week, I watched her get up early every morning to make meals for teenagers who came from Arizona to stay with her and work at a MegaSports camp sponsored by our church for the youth of the city of Vallejo.

My mother has been through many hard times in her life, but through it all, she has not given up. For a season in her life, she was a single parent, and she worked hard to take care of her children. She returned to school as an adult and completed a bachelor’s degree and a teaching credential. Both before, during, and after completing her education, she was a dedicated teacher–and still is. She pours love into children and inspires them with her creativity. She inspires me.

Two years ago, my mother was diagnosed with stomach cancer. This was a frightening time for me, when I didn’t know if I would lose her, but I was so thankful when the radiation treatment — the power of light, the power of God — eliminated the lymphoma. I knew that the Lord had heard our prayers.


The miracle of my mother’s healing filled my heart with praise and thankfulness to God. I am so glad that the woman who carried me in her womb, gave birth to me and breastfed me, who cherished me and taught me how to read and write and sing and draw and cook and clean and pray every night before sleeping and make my bed every morning when I woke up …  is alive and well. I love you, dear little Mommy of mine!

About Jane Beal

I’m a poet. When I was fifteen, I got my first regularly paying job as an optician, so I developed the habit of looking at things closely, through different lenses, and from different perspectives. I later became a professor and a midwife. So I like to share what I’ve learned with others in ways that are creative and meaningful, and I know how to care for pregnant mothers and welcome babies with love, which I’ve done in far-flung places like Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, Uganda, and the Philippines. I haven’t lost my faith in God despite everything I’ve seen – the opposite, rather – I am in awe of the Creator. I like zumba dancing and birdwatching. I love music. All of this (and more) goes into the poetry. Poetry bears witness to everything that matters in life.

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