I Have My Mothers Eyes (A Gift Of Mercy)

11:21 PM

They always told me I had my mother’s eyes. And I would beam back at them with a little girls pride and the undeniable knowledge that I knew I had the most beautiful mother in the whole wide world. I couldn't wait to grow into my mother’s eyes and be as beautiful as her one day. I guess all little girls think this of their mothers, and that’s just how it should be. She was beautiful but my love for her and the love I felt from her made her the most beautiful woman in the world to me. 

As I grew older I realized that there were many things different about me than my mother. My hair was light and hers was dark brown, almost black. She had pointy feminine facial features and my nose was getting larger every day. And I remember the exact moment where I could no longer steal borrow her beautiful shoes because my feet were bigger than hers at only fourteen years old. My once slender girly figure started getting lumps and bumps in awkward places and looked nothing like my mom’s lumps and bumps that men seemed to like and notice. I was very disappointed in puberty. This is not at all what I had planned. 

But eventually sixteen came around and I started to form into a more recognizable womanly figure instead of a jolly oaf of a giant. The chubby rolls started forming into more socially acceptable places, to my delight, and I grew more comfortable in my five foot ten frame. I liked being sixteen-year-old me and it started to be okay that I hadn't grown into being my mother... after all I still had her eyes and that was my favorite part about her anyways (besides her hugs that is). 

(I took this photo of my mother when I was 16, that kiss on her face is my kiss)
It would be nice to stop this story here wouldn't it? I think so. This could just be a story about self-acceptance and growing in to one’s self...but it isn't. This is a story about mercy in unexpected places. 

Not long after I finally arrived in life and got to be sixteen years old and just when the world seemed as if it started to come together for me, my world was then quickly shattered. I was on the verge of having my first date, my first boyfriend and I was going to go to my first prom in the dress my mother and I picked out together. Then she died. My mother, a single parent with the best hugs in the whole world died, and took her beautiful eyes with her. 

I am going to be 35 years old this year. Just three years younger than my mom when she died tragically. I knew a day would come, if I was lucky enough, that I would grow older than her on this earth. I have been hoping and preparing to out age her and I am okay with that. What I was unprepared for was seeing a picture of myself last week and seeing my mother’s exact same eyes looking back at me. They always said I had her eyes but they were always younger smaller fresher versions of the eyes that looked back at me so lovingly throughout my childhood. But now I truly have her eyes. The hairline wrinkles starting to form from all the moments of laughter, the slight drooping of the eyelids from years of life and gravity. I have grown into my mother’s eyes and she once again looks back at me, but this time through the mirror. It is both haunting and a small gift of mercy and love. I have missed her so much. I have missed her hugs. I have missed her face and I have missed her eyes.  

Lately I sometimes catch myself just staring into the mirror at these old familiar eyes. It’s been almost 20 years since she has passed and almost all the pieces of her life have faded away... then I wake up one day with the same eyes she had when I knew her last. And it’s like something new I get to have with her again.  I can see my mom being very amused up in heaven right now thinking she is so clever and all giving me these old eyes of her. Very funny mom! 

I am going to enjoy these old eyes for now. These eyes will only be hers for a little while more and then they will return to being mine as I collect more wrinkles upon them then she ever will... if I am lucky enough. 

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