God Bless You, Mom
by Christie Ellison · Kula
This will be the first Mother’s Day since I came into this world on a wintry, snow-stormy December night five decades ago that I don’t have a mother in physical form to make a toast to, in honor of her day.
Mom [Lorraine Colao] and I almost shared a birthday—only two days apart. We were blessed to celebrate many birthdays together.
Just a few short weeks ago, mom passed away. For 91 years, she enjoyed the love of her family. Without fail, she expressed her love verbally in each conversation she had with her daughters, always ending with a genuine and heartfelt sentiment of “God bless you.”
Lorraine Colao cherished her children beyond measure.
There were six of us, yet she never gave into favoritism between any of us. Bathed in her goodness and generosity of heart, my sisters and I were fortunate to know without a shadow of a doubt, that we were cherished beyond measure by our precious mother.
I stepped into the light drizzle and cool wind of a Maui day upon my return home from the chill of the East Coast temperatures. Instinctively I drew my sweater tighter around me, and zipped it up against the weather, pulling the hood over my head. It was then that I realized that mom was still covering me in her love. The sweater I had worn on the plane that day to keep me warm was now offering its protection against the elements. It had belonged to her. She was still holding me close and protecting me—like she always had.
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom, and God Bless You!
Mom Deserves a Prize
by Nakea Rand · Kihei
I think Mom deserves this prize because she always does almost everything for me. Like feed me, and wash my clothes, and makes me delicious food all of the time. She does my hair, helps me with homework and makes my bed and vacuums—even when the floor seems clean.
She washes the floor, helps me with projects, and takes me to swim lessons and drum lessons.
When I’m hurt, she helps me feel better and takes care of me.
She lets me change the channel, when she’s watching TV.
She buys me stuff even when it isn’t my birthday.
She cleans my room, even when I think it isn’t very dirty.
She takes me to many fun places, and gets a souvenir for me.
She rides rides with me, like Disneyland roller coasters—even if she doesn’t want to.
Mom gets up early, usually way before me, and makes sure I get up on time for school.
She does so much for me; I really want her to get this prize.
Courage, Strength and Goodness
by Henrietta Chong · Kula
My mother, Nancy De Luiz, lost her mom to tuberculosis in childhood and grew up motherless in a poor plantation family. She helped her older sisters raise their children, even when she had no one to raise her. She learned how to cook, do laundry and clean the house at an early age. There was no mother to nurture her, smother her with kisses and hugs and tell her she was loved; something all children need to survive and thrive.
How then, did my mother so lovingly give her children what she never had? From my earliest recollections, I remember that everything she did for us was done with love and kindness. I’m sure we tried her patience many times, but I cannot remember harsh words from her—ever.
All the neighborhood children loved staying at our house because mom invited them to have lunch and snacks with us.
When my dad worked the night shift on the plantation, she would make pancakes for dinner and delicious chocolate cupcakes for dessert.
Every Saturday was baking day and my mom made the best pies. The neighborhood knew about “baking Saturdays” and someone always stopped by for a taste. Each of us had our own favorite and as we grew up and requested our own special pies on our birthdays.
My mom has suffered many challenges in her life and I have learned so much from her by observing how she has dealt with heartache and loss and worked her way through all of it.
The murder of my brother in 1981 was the biggest cross my mom has endured and her deep and strong faith did not allow her to falter.
Whenever I suffer setbacks in my life, I look at her courage and strength and I am in awe. She has suffered, and yet she still finds goodness and beauty in this world.
My children and grandchildren adore her and they hope to take from her some of the qualities that have made her so loved by our family. What a wonderful example and inspiration she has been to all of us.
From a young girl who had no one to tell her that she was special, she has somehow managed not to repeat her past, but instead, has made everyone she has loved feel that they are the most important person in the world.