Celebrating Life and Mother’s Day!

Dear Friends,

I woke up today to the sun shining brightly through our windows. The energetic
screeching of the red-crowned parrots could be heard nearby and I rejoiced to
be waking up in such an optimistic atmosphere. I silently bless everything
around me as I begin my day. It is another opportunity to make new memories
and I invite you all to join me in getting out early to make the most of the day.

Mother’s Day is being celebrated in the U.S. and in over 90 more countries
around the world today. A few years ago, I requested that my children spend the
whole day with me on my visit to New York, which they did. Their company was
worth more than any other gift I could have received. I recall listening to their
good-natured banter and being so proud of the young adults they had become. I
am satisfied that their bond remains strong to this day.

This is my first Mother’s Day without my mother’s physical presence. Although
she had been bedridden for years as a result of Alzheimer’s disease, it was
comforting to look in her eyes and perceive some recognition when she smiled
or pulled my ears! Her passing earlier this year is surreal some days, but I can
still sense her presence in my life every single day. I am blessed because I can
count on my father to offer his wisdom when I need it!

Family, friends and community are my incentives for wanting to live a long life.
The last week has brought mourning to Atenas as we suffered the loss of
several prominent community members. I knew some personally; others by
reputation because they had contributed significantly to the lives of those
around them. These sad events led me to think about the important people in
my past with whom I have lost touch on account of daily living. I will make an
effort to connect with those I haven’t seen in a while. In our modern age, with
so many ways to stay in touch, there is really no excuse for not doing so.

Have a wonderful day celebrating life and Mother’s day, Marietta

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