My mother died recently. I HAD to say something about this wonderful woman who nurtured and kept me safe and loved me all my life. As a eulogy writer it was more or less expected (by me - no one pressured me in the slightest). I wanted something out of the ordinary so came up with a eulogy that talks about photos of her over the years and what she was doing and who she was. I hope you will enjoy and be inspired. If I can help you write a eulogy for your mother - or father - a eulogy for a brother or sister... or anyone - I'd be honored.
A Eulogy for Imogene Schafer
One of the strangely wonderful things about losing someone you love is that you get to see family and friends you may not have seen for years. It is SO good seeing all of you. Thank you for being here as we say a final farewell to mom. So many have called or emailed words of sympathy and encouragement. So many have been praying for us. Thank you..
In the past week, I’ve never felt closer to my siblings as we’ve shared common fears and hopes and confusion and memories. All of that has been extraordinarily good even in the midst of sorrow.
A few days ago I sifted through thousands of photos on my computer to find pictures of mom… what a sentimental journey. Mom was there for graduations and weddings and holidays and parties and births. She was there, literally, every day of our lives until last Wednesday. But even now she will continue to influence our lives for as long as we live.
My photo journey - - I saw mom and dad standing out on the lawn with three children – later Greg would come along, so there would be four, but he wasn’t in the earlier pictures. We were a farm family. Mom in a house dress, dad in a work shirt. In the background is the land he farmed… I remember mom sometimes driving the tractor if she was needed – never hesitated to climb up there and plow a field or cultivate corn. I remember her loading us into the truck and taking lunches to dad… the original tail-gate party…
I see her in so many pictures standing or sitting beside the man she loved her entire adult life – even after he was gone. Wonderful parents we had…
There’s no picture of this, except in my mind… she and I would sometimes have a battle of the will. She insisted on growing peas in her garden. There are few things in life I hate more than peas. Nevertheless, I had to help plant them and then weed them, then pick them, then she made me eat them. I’d sit at that table with my mouth clamped shut for hours, unwilling, and she’d stand there waiting until they were gone. I don’t really remember how the issue was resolved, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t to my liking…
I saw mom with us all on vacations every summer. I don’t think they had tons of money but seeing the world outside North Creek was important, so they saved for summer vacations – to the Grand Canyon, to the Petrified Forest and Monument Valley and the Rocky Mountains…. Or sometimes it would just be to a lakeside rental for a week… Wonderful times (not sure how they handled three kids in the back seat, for hours at a time, picking on one another in an un-air conditioned car…
I saw a picture of mom with our grandparents and great grandparents, and aunts and uncles and cousins, serving up Thanksgiving dinner, all of us crowding around the table in her kitchen – smiles on every face because we all knew how blessed we were – how wonderful it was to have four generations eating together.
I saw the picture of her pride and tender love as she held baby Greg in her arms. I saw the look on her face as she sent Kathy off to school – probably a first day – ushering her to the bus. I saw a bit of wonder (maybe confusion) on her face as she saw two of her sons (who fought non-stop growing up) being ordained into the ministry (with all the fighting they did over the years, how could they be any good at being pastors?)
Then there were the wedding pictures. She was beaming in each of the photos of our weddings and was clearly thrilled at the weddings of her grandkids. Her grandkids could do no wrong and she embraced, with open arms, the ones they were marrying…
I saw a picture of her on the steps of this church building, with her family, on the day we moved in. She was in the parade of the entire congregation, walking, from the old church to the new. She loved this place and the people here and the ministry she was a part of for five decades or more.
I saw her, in more than one picture, holding Candy, her little puffball of a dog – a Pomeranian. How she loved that dog… I saw pictures of her with the international exchange students she and dad had in their home in the 80’s. She loved all three – one from Finland, one from El Salvador and one from Japan. I’ve always suspected that she loved them more than any of her own kids – they never disappointed her or gave her grief. A couple of decades ago she got on a plane, all by herself, and went to visit Petri, in Finland. What a brave thing to do…
I saw pictures of her 90th birthday party. You know, by the time you’re 90 you’ve outlived just about everyone you’ve known… but dozens of people showed up to honor her.
I saw picture after picture of a woman of strength and determination and fun. I saw a woman who was serious about her faith, who wanted to be a great mother and grandmother and knew she had. I saw a woman who touched the lives of more people than she ever realized and who was loved by so many until the very day she met Jesus in person.
Mom wasn’t perfect, she’d be the first to admit that. But how she lived her life and how she impacted her world has all been positive and good and Godly.
We’re going to miss you mom, but you will always have a place in our hearts and we will love you forever.
Tags: Eulogy, eulogy writing, write a eulogy, eulogy speech, giving a eulogy
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