Mary watched over me as I slept...
She sat on the table beside my bed, close enough so that I could reach over and touch the braille of flowers on her cloak, and even in the dark be comforted by her presence. I made the tiny rosary she carries during my first infatuation with beads.
At the point in my life when this figurine adorned my bedroom - I was twelve/thirteen years old - I seriously thought about becoming a nun. I subscribed to a Catholic magazine, and I even wrote to a convent to find out more about being a nun. There was just one thing in the way: In the letter I wrote I asked the nuns is I would have to believe in the infallibility of the Pope. Yes, was the reply. That was it - I would never qualify. It was shortly after that I asked my parents if I could drop out of catechism and study the bible on my own. They agreed to it. So I was never confirmed and never got to take on my saint's name. I continued attending mass and felt every sermon that Fr. Johnson wrote had a message specifically addressed to me, but still the doubt grew each time we had to recite our faith in the one holy catholic church... I drifted away.
When my family moved to Oregon and I was still attending college in California, my mother packed up the statue of Mary and Jesus and took it with her. It graced her bedroom for over twenty years, and I am sure it brought comfort to her. When she passed on, Mary came back to me. As I look at it now, I see things I didn't pay much attention to before: her motherly tenderness and patience, the loving way in which she teaches her child, the little bird - a connection with nature. These are the parenting qualities that I value, and that I hope I have passed on to my daughters more often than not.
Please click on the link to find more tributes to Mary at Recuerda Mi Corazon.