The VOICE of Inspiration

By Don Lindsey

I have been very blessed in my life to have the parents that I do.  I’ve talked about that pretty often I think in my columns but with Mother’s Day next Sunday, I felt that it would be the perfect time to brag about my mother and also my wife who’s a terrific mother to our children.

I’ll start with my mom since she has the seniority.  Born Wanda Lou Harner, she grew up on a farm in Xenia, Ohio where she learned early-on how to work hard.  Being the oldest of four children, she was expected to carry out a lot of different tasks. From helping my grandfather tend to the crops, to helping my grandmother cook and clean.  She was also expected to do well in school which she did and eventually went into nurses training after graduating high school.

While she did very well with nurse training, she ended up taking a different path career-wise and married her first husband with whom she had my three brother’s, my sister and a stillborn baby which I believe would have been her first child.  That wouldn’t be the only time she lost a child, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

After her first marriage ended, she took on any job she could, sometimes working two jobs to try and provide as much as she could for her children.  This meant that she wasn’t around as much as she wanted to be but her dedication to her family was and still is to this day one of the most important things to her. She came from good stock as my grandmother was a wonderful woman and showed her daughters how to be a great mother and both have done just that with their children.

I for one was a challenging child.  I was born with a host of medical issues, and she spent a lot of my first few years at doctor’s office or hospitals.  My mother was 42 years when she had me, and I’m sure that made it even tougher for her, but she’s always been the guiding force in my life, and at 86 years old is still someone that I turn to for advice.  I’ve seen her go through hell with losing my brother Jimmy, and to be honest, I didn’t think that she would recover from that.  She did though, as much as a parent could in that situation and thoroughly enjoys spoiling my children now and keeping up with her grandkids pictures on Facebook.  To say that she’s my hero would be a massive understatement and I thank God every day for allowing me to have this awesome lady as my mom.

They say that men will sometimes marry a woman that is like their mother.  I’ve always found that statement to be very strange until I got married and saw the way my wife Tammy mothers our children.  I spoke about my grandmother and how my mom learned about parenting from her.  The same can be said for Tammy and her mother who is one of the sweetest, most loving people you’ll meet, and you can tell that my wife learned pretty much everything she knows about being a mama by sitting under the learning tree and watching her mama.

She’s been through a lot with our oldest who is on the autism spectrum and also with just being a mother of three.  Until I came into the picture, she did everything on her own. She’d get up, get the kids to school or daycare and then work all day.  When the workday was done, she would pick up the kids from daycare, drive 30 minutes or so home, get homework done, dinner fixed and made sure that baths were done before putting them to bed for the night.  That alone makes her one of the strongest people I know and seeing the way she’s raised these kids is very inspiring to me.  I’ve been very blessed to have had a front row seat to two of the greatest mothers that God has put on this earth.

I also understand how lucky I am.  A lot of folks have lost their mother or didn’t have one for some reason or another.  I have had my mom for my entire 44 years.  As I go into next Sunday, I will not only spend the day celebrating these great women; I will also thank the good Lord for allowing me to learn how to parent through Tammy and my mother.  This is probably an article that I should have saved for next week, but as I reflect on the terrific work these ladies have done, I have realized that every day should be Mother’s Day.  With the holiday approaching, a lot of us will be spending time preparing gifts and such for the big day.  I for one am going to try and make it a point to remember the sacrifices and love my mother, and my wife has shown to their children daily. Have a wonderful week, and God bless.


Don Lindsey is a follower of Christ, son, husband, father, and a survivor.  Originally from Dayton Ohio, and resident of Apopka for six years, Don sees his life as a dedication to his wife, parents, children, and community.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Yes Donnie, I have to agree, Mamas are special people! God must love mothers in a very special way. I remember my mother kneeling and praying, always praying. Did she have it easy? Not at all, but her strong faith sustained her. It is due to those prayers and that faith that I am here today. She watched as two of her babies were laid in tiny coffins. Eventually she listened as my father took his last breath. Death is part of life and the beginning of a new journey. 95 years she lived and blessed everyone by the living. God bless you Don, Chaz

  2. Donnie you are a very fortunate person to have both of your parents still alive and close by. So many people your age, aren’t that fortunate, in that regard. My father has been dead 43+ years, and my mother has been dead 12+ years. When my mother died, I truly knew what it was like to feel like an orphan, an adult orphan, and I know that sounds ridiculous, as I am a grown-up woman, but that is exactly how it felt. She died at the end of Feb. and Mother’s Day followed very soon, and it was hardest Mother’s Day ever for me, and I spent the entire couple of weeks before and after crying my eyes out….actually my grief lasted over a year’s period. Eventually, I learned to accept, what I had to accept. Time does help with grief eventually, but you really never get the emptiness out of your heart. My father died at age 52, and my mother was 86, almost 87 years old when she passed away. I took my father’s passing very hard too, as his death was so unexpected, as well as my mother’s too, when I went by her house in the morning, and found her deceased. Both my parents were just being their usual selves one day, and then were gone forever the next day…..my husband’s mother died in Feb. this year also, and his father had already passed years ago in 1997, so I understand his feelings too, even though he is not the crier that I am when stressed out…..Take care Donnie.

  3. Donny, I’m so glad to keep up with you, Tammy and your kids through your articles. Mother’s Day still hasn’t gotten easier for me as I go into the 4th one without my mother. My mother was a mountain of a woman, as my brother called her. She was eccentric, talented, funny, irreverent, smat enough to be in Mensa, had a variety of interests and creativity and raised us both to believe that can’t was a swear word in the dictionary. She rescued greyhounds back in the 1950’s, and her compassion for animals has stayed with me until today. (Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, I guess.) We had huge differences, but in the end, Parkinsons Lewy Body Dementia had me earning my stripes as a mother since I became her 24/7 caregiver. It was during those three years the impact of her sacrificial love became clear to me and dying to self took on new meaning for me. She was 88 when God called her home. Happy Mother’s Day to your beautiful Tammy, Mom and for everyone else out there, let your mother know every day that you love her.

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