Saint Mary Lou

*** a re-write of part of my Mom’s eulogy I gave at her funeral ***

Mom was a great cook. The extra 20 pounds my Dad, my brother, and I carry around are a testament to that. Her blond-brownies were famous. As were her green Corn-Flake Christmas Wreath cookies. And I dare say she mastered the apple pie. And there was another pie she would make for her four brothers, and only for them, and it was a highlight whenever she brought it to a holiday gathering. They said it tasted just like the pies their Grandmother made. I could go on and on …but I’ll leave it at that – Mom could cook. She was a good cook because, as with all good cooks, she was a very caring, loving, nice, and a beautiful person, and when someone cooks with love in their hearts, the food is always better.

Have I established that my Mom could cook?

But …Mom was also terribly self-critical, and no matter what she cooked or baked, she’d always offer it but state some sort of flaw. “I think these brownies are ‘OK’, but I cooked them too long.”  Or, “you don’t have to eat it, I know it’s much too dry.” It was almost comical. She’d say this and apologize for her substandard work as everyone was stuffing their faces with whatever she had cooked. It was always, “it’s not my best effort,” or, “I think I used too much sugar,” or, “it’s pretty good, but it could’ve been better.”

And I’ll bet when God asked Mom about her life, she probably sighed and looked at him and said, “well, I think most of it was ‘OK’, but it wasn’t my best effort and it could’ve been better.”  And I hope God said to her what I would say to her, and what we always said about whatever she baked …”it was perfect. You’re perfect. You did great. None have done better.”

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