Challenger School

An Indelible Mark


My mom passed away unexpectedly this past week.

I am so happy that I had the opportunity to give her some grandkids, even for a short period of time. She loved them and treated them as her own.

Sometimes, I would get a little frustrated with my mom. She was always buying me or my kids something. It’s how she showed her love. She didn’t need to. There was never any doubt in my mind how much she loved us.

I am amazed as I’ve posted on Facebook about the loss of my mom how many of my friends remember her. She was one of the more popular moms. She loved to go to places like Chuck ‘E’ Cheese and Nickel Cade probably more than the kids she toted with her. I remember going to Lagoon as a young adult. My mom never liked the rides but would stay in a game called Fascination all day long.

The peers from my youth remember my mom fondly. She has made a profound difference in the lives of many, even without knowing it. Just by being herself.

People know when they are cared for. Children know when they’re loved. My mom was a loving person who wore her heart on her sleeve. One of her favorite activities was driving to Mt. Olivet Cemetery, where she will now be buried, to see the deer and the geese. Animals and children especially have an incredible intuition. You can’t fool them. They can read inauthentic. My mom was as pure and genuine as can be. Which is why people were so attracted to her.

I would love to be the kind of parent that my mom was. She was so proud of me, all my accomplishments. People would tell me from her work, “We know all about you. Your mom talks about you all the time.” My mom sacrificed so much for me, but I don’t think it ever seemed like a sacrifice to her. Sometimes, I wished that she had more of a life outside of me. I never thought it was fair that she gave up so much so that I could experience success.

I would give anything to have my mom back. I miss her so much already and know that this feeling will become only more pronounced as time goes on. At the same time, good parenting leaves an indelible mark. It’s a mark on my soul and spirit. My mom can never truly be gone because she is a part of every decision I make, a part of every hug I give my child, a part of every happy and sad moment that I have from here on out. Through her excellent parenting, she has influenced me beyond measure. In ways that even I don’t understand.

I love you Mom. So much. Thank you for everything.

About author

Dr. Jim Martin

Dr. Jim Martin

Jim Martin is a principal in the Salt Lake City School District and foster dad to two boys. He is graduate of Westminster College, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in elementary education. He then went on to get a Masters degree in Teaching and Learning and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy. Jim has taught kindergarten, first, fourth, and fifth grades. This is his tenth year as a public school administrator. In his spare time, Jim loves theatre and has acted in over 30 productions. He is the artistic director of a local theatre company.

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