*Note: This is an unedited post from my journal. From my heart to my mom’s and yours about grief and a mother’s love …

If I could spend just one more minute in your presence, mom, a huge smile would erupt across my face! Not the small and guarded half-smiles that creep across on any occasion, but a smile filled to the fullest with joy. Joy I’d feel to the deepest of my core because I’m with you, my mom.

My mom – the one who carried me within you for nine months! Who bore me in the greatest of pains but then greeted me with the greatest of love. Who took care of my every need when I was too young and unable to take care of myself … and who still cared about my every need even when I was “too old” to have you take care of them. The mom, and friend, who laughed with me, cried with me and loved me like no other ever has or ever will in this world.

If I could spend just one more minute in your presence, I would reach out and pull you close into a hug. A hug that held tighter. Felt more. The type of hug that drops all barriers and allows for hearts to fully connect in the moment.

And in that moment I would lean in and whisper in your ear the words I too often held back. The words I did hold back in our last moments, out of discomfort, not knowing they’d be our last. I’d tell you I love you. I’d tell you I was sorry for all the times I didn’t say it and all the ways I didn’t show it.

Oh how much wasted time there was!

But not this minute. It wouldn’t be wasted. I would continue by telling you how grateful I was for you and all the self-less sacrifices you made that I was unworthy of. And I would let it be known just how grateful I was for this one last minute too!

But it wouldn’t be enough to express how I truly feel … Except it would be enough for you – to hear the simple words every mom yearns to hear from their child’s heart.

Oh how I yearn to fulfill that for you … and for me.

And then I’d lean back and look you in your eyes … Did I ever do that before – take the time to truly and fully see you? I’m not sure I ever did. But if I could have that one last chance, if I could spend just one more minute in your presence, I wouldn’t hurry back into the busyness of my day. I’d hold your hand, gazing into your face, as you slipped away.

"If I Could Spend One More Minute in Your Presence" by Katrina V. Wylie - an unedited blog post from my heart about the topics of grief and the love of a mother.

Yes! If I could spend just one more minute in your presence, mom, I would happily and eagerly drive those 6 hours, those 350 mere miles that all too often kept us apart. I would drop everything that was once “too important” and, without hesitation or question, cross the “great divide.” Without complaint of the cost or “inconveniences” it would create! If I could spend just one more minute with you, I would fly across the country … across the world!

Because there’s something that happens when you realize you no longer have just one more minute. When it hits hard in your heart that all the minutes you thought you’d have later, you thought you’d have forever to live, are gone. They’ve been spent.

It’s in those many moments after the last, you realize what’s important and what’s not. You realize “uncomfortable” and “inconvenient” are time-stealers. Life stealers. Love stealers! And you’d give anything for one more minute to decide to let go of those thieves, and instead grab hold of the givers – one of the biggest and best givers being you, mom.

And though I know we won’t be given that one more minute, at least not this side of heaven, I find comfort in knowing you’re spending your forever moments in the presence of our God. In whose presence where you’re experiencing the greatest of joys and the love you deserve.

And I’ll spend my remaining moments, especially the ones like today where I’m craving more of them with you, reaching out to our God of comfort, our Jesus, allowing Him to be the gap filler of the void you’ve left behind in my soul. He is the bridge now, from me to you. The bridge I will one day walk over to spend my forever moments with Him and you too.

But for that moment I wait. Not shrouded in sadness. No. For you, mom, I will choose to live out what I learned from you. To love through the hard. Through the seemingly impossible. Through the uncomfortable and inconvenient. To let the tears fall when and where they may and without shame. To make relationships a priority and put others first … even when it means being hurt a time or two or ten thousand! I will keep connecting. Keep trying. Keep giving. Keep loving.

Yes. These things I will hold onto from you, and give out to those I still have one more minute with …