To Carrie Southworth Johnson on Mother’s Day 2015

by Coddy Johnson

Dear Carrie,

One day many years from now, when we are old and gray, and when our daughters have grown, and when we are grandparents or even great-parents, and when the years remaining in our lives can be counted on one or two hands, we will sit together, just like this, on a Sunday morning.

And think back on our lives together.

No matter how well we have lived nor how much we have given, some part of us will wonder whether we have made a difference. Whether our lives mattered.

Here is what I already know we will say about you:

  • You will have been an extraordinary mother – present, caring, loving, engaged, the woman and place to whom our children always turned when they needed love, or lessons, or both;
  • You will have been a loving sister and daughter – honest, open, giving and forgiving and willing to put aside whatever was required to be with your family when they needed you;
  • You will have been an irresistible friend – charming, witty, irascible, ready always with just the right joke for the friend who needed a laugh or just the right hug for the friend who wanted to be loved;
  • You will have been – and will be until the end – a gentle and tenacious wife, warm, beautiful, open, devoted, and unwilling to settle for anything less than full dedication from both of us in our deeply entwined lives.

And on top of all that, somewhere, somehow, along the way, you will have built a business – Twigtale – one that will have helped thousands and perhaps someday hundreds of thousands of parents searching for the right thing to say to their children who were sad or scared or lonely or confused or just plain needing to be loved… You and the Twigtale team will have given it to them. The words they needed. The hope they wanted. The love they were seeking.

I know this from the parents you have helped so far. From the many friends and family members who use your books each day. From my own talks with our daughters about the hard things in their young lives. And from our friend Andrew, who didn’t know how to speak to his son about his mother’s death until he found the words in the book you made.

Sweetheart, you and your team did this. You built this wonderful thing. Both a business and a gift – something only you could do – emotionally connected to your readers and to the life you lead each day.

I am so proud of you, and I love you,

C