Friday, May 30, 2008

My Mother's Obituary

This spring I've been in a slump. My second son went on a mission and I miss him. My knees have really been acting up and the pain has made me less energetic and responsible. I've just been barely treading water when I got a phone call from my brother that my mother was in the hospital. I should have fallen apart but I felt surprisingly peaceful. The next night she was gone. So this morning my sister asked me to write her obituary, which was tough. At first I wrote it completely sterile but then I couldn't resist and put in a little about the bright light my mother was. One of the well known stories she wrote was called the "Daffodil Principle," inspiring us to change the world one little step at a time. She was truly one of the noble and great ones and I'm honored to have been given the gift of being her daughter. Here it is.

Obituary for Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards

Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards, 76, passed away Friday morning, May 30th, at Utah Valley Medical Center after struggling valiantly with heart complications. Jaroldeen is survived by four of her five siblings, her twelve children, 76 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren. Jaroldeen was born on February 23, 1932 in Alberta Canada to Julia Russell and Charles Owen Asplund. She received her B.A. in English Literature from BYU in 1954, the same year she married the love of her live, Weston Eyring Edwards.
Weston and Jerry had twelve children and moved extensively throughout their marriage, living on both coasts and in Boston, Chicago, Dallas and Utah. She has served with vigor in every auxiliary in the church and served a mission in Johannsburg South Africa where she and Weston directed the institute and seminary programs. After her youngest child went to kindergarten, Jaroldeen began writing and published twelve books, five national releases and seven works with Deseret Book. She was a popular speaker at Women’s Conference and the National Mother of the Year awards ceremony. She was also awarded the Distinguished Emeritus Alumni Award from BYU in 2002.
Of all her accomplishments, Jaroldeen’s greatest achievements have been in the lives of her family and friends. She had a unique gift to recognize and appreciate the talents in others and to make them feel loved and lifted by her presence. Her creative mind, kind heart and brilliant smile allowed her to make everything from her Relief Society lessons to ward activities to a simple story told to the grandchildren sparkle. Her generous heart filled her home with love, fun, family and friends, including an attitude that there was always room for one more. She leaves all her children and grandchildren with the knowledge that they were truly loved and they know that she loved the Lord.
A public viewing will be held Monday, June 2, at 7 p.m. at ______________________. The funeral will be the following day at 3 pm. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Weston and Jaroldeen Edwards scholarship at BYU.


Lucy said...

What a beautiful tribune to your mom. Prayers are with you at this time. She sounds like a neat lady!

ACS said...

What a wonderful legacy your mother has left you. ((((hugs))))

Candace E. Salima said...

I'm so sorry for the loss of your mother, but what a beautiful tribute you have written about her. Very touching. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this time.

Kim Thompson said...

Sorry for your loss. I didn't realize she was your mother. She's one of my favorite authors of all time.

Marsha Ward said...

Christine, I'm so very sorry to hear of your loss, but what a wonderful lady your mother was and is. You are indeed blessed to be her daughter. May you and your family be comforted in this time of grief. It will hit you in strange ways and at diverse times to come, but please know that you have my love and prayers.

Anne Bradshaw said...

Very sorry, Christine, to hear about your mother's death. Such a difficult time. Your tribute is beautiful. You were indeed fortunate to have such a mother.

Sandra said...

Christine, I am so sorry for your loss. I wish I had read this earlier, or looked in the obituaries I would have come and given you a hug in person.

Stephanie Abney said...

Hi Christine ~

I can't remember if I've been here before or not but just clicked over here today after reading your blog on ANWA Founder & Friends. I commented on your post about the pent up emotions exploding and then started scrolling down. I am so sorry for your loss and I had no idea Jaroldeen Edwards was your mom... what a lovely, talented lady. I loved what I read of hers and THE DAFFODIL PRINCIPLE will remain a favorite of mine always.

May the spirit of the Lord wrap around you like a comfortable, familiar blanket, bringing you warm memories and protection.


Katrina said...

Oh, I am so very sorry for the loss of your mother. That is a beautiful obituary! My heart breaks for you and your family!

Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

Tere Charney said...

I just had to write this to you, Christine, and your entire family. I have never blogged before. I heard your mom speak in 1997 at a Northern California Twins Conference, where I bought a copy of her book Things I Wish I'd Known Sooner (which she lovingly signed). I read the book then while my now 4 teenagers were very young. Her words inspired and encouraged me with love and humor. I loved her stories of family. I just reread the book and this morning googled your mom to see what more she has written and possibly contact her to tell her how much I love her book! I was saddened by the news of her passing. I want you and your family to know how her words affected my family, essentially a stranger to her and you. I will treasure this book and share it with others (by buying more, as I do not want to lose it!)
My thoughts are with you.
Best regards,
Tere Charney
Napa, CA

Bugg's mama said...

I just found a copy of Celebration at a second-hand store. It looked interesting since I love to celebrate. I'm only on page 8 and have marked it up something fierce. I love it! I thought, "I have got to write this author and tell her Thank YOU!"

But I see that she has passed on. I'm sorry. What a wonderful woman!

Love, Bree
(also LDS in Utah)

Anonymous said...

my mom taught me about your mother... she knew her in New York. as a young child, i read some of her books, and her lessons have stuck with me all these years, so much so that i want to read them again 20 years later... what a blessing when we can stand on the shoulders of giants. i loved reading her stories. thanks for sharing your mom with us...

CLM said...

So sorry to read of the loss of your mother. I met her when I was working for NAL which published Harvest of Dreams, and enjoyed getting to know her.

Best regards,

C. Martin