by Linda Cox

Of all the beautiful crocheted items Mom made as gifts for family and friends, by far the most popular were her crocheted ducks—ironically the only item Mom actually sold for “mad money.” No doubt the popularity of the duck stemmed from its body being filled with jelly beans; then when squeezed, jelly beans squirted from the hole under its tail. I’m sure you get the picture.

Every spring Mom crocheted and sold hundreds of ducks. Daddy and I dubbed the house “Mom’s Duck Factory” because anywhere you walked through the house, ducks were staring at you.

Our favorite duck story happened one afternoon at the American Legion, where Daddy called Bingo. He always took ducks along to sell. That afternoon, he phoned Mom shortly after he arrived at the Legion, asking if we could bring more ducks to the hall at break time. He said people were demanding them. So Mom and I grabbed as many finished ducks as we could find and headed into town.

When I entered the hall with the ducks, I heard a low sound rumbling across the hall—“ducks, ducks, ducks.”

A woman ran up to me, grabbed two ducks and stuck her money in my hand. Another woman did the same and another and another as I struggled to find Daddy. When I finally reached him, I was “duckless” with a fistful of cash. I just shrugged, said “I sold them all,” gave him a kiss, and left. Back in the car as I handed Mom the money, I told her what happened. She and I “quacked up” (sorry!) and we laughed all the way home.

Seldom a Mother’s Day passes that I don’t think about Mom’s Duck Factory. It’s a special memory for me, serving as a reminder that God blessed me with a wonderful mother, even though she and I had a tumultuous relationship at times.

Mother’s Day is a joyous time for many people, a time to let mothers know how much they mean to us. But it can also be a day with mixed emotions for many people—those who cannot have children; those who recently lost their mother or their child; those who, for whatever reason, don’t have a good relationship, if any relationship at all, with their mother or their child.

In Isaiah 49:15-16, the Lord says “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands….” (Bold mine)

No matter what your relationship with your mother or your children, be thankful and rejoice in the God who loves you even more than we can ever imagine.