A friend of mine made a Mother’s Day Facebook post that touched my heart.

Steven was not a perfect child—far from it. He got into lots of trouble and did things that were very wrong. His actions led him to friends like him, and together they continued down a path leading them to worse things.

Steven’s parents tried to help and direct him in any way they could. They tried to promote wholesome activities and better friends. But nothing they did worked to pull Steven from the path he was on.

Eventually, Steven was busted for drug use and sentenced to prison. Prison life was hard, and he had some challenging times. Through it all, his parents did what they could to encourage him and let him know they loved him.

Steven would sometimes get the desire to change, but the path was slippery, and the pressure in prison would make him drop his resolve and revert to his old ways. But then, one day, something did occur that changed his life; he got word that his mother had passed away.

Losing one of the few people who loved him unconditionally hit him harder than even his prison sentence had. His mother had always been there for him, and Steven knew she loved him no matter what he did. Being in prison, he couldn’t even attend her funeral to express his love for her.

As he thought of her love for him, that love did something nothing else could do. It steeled his resolve to change, and nothing could sway him from that determination. He started working to make the changes he needed in his life to move down the right path. It wasn’t easy, but any time he faltered, he would think of his mother, and it renewed his determination.

Steven eventually worked up to the point where he could be part of a work crew. He gained experience that would benefit him when the time came for him to start a new life outside of prison. The day eventually came that he was released on parole, and his father welcomed him home.

Steven faced new challenges of fitting back into society. As he looked for a job, though no one said it directly, he knew the many rejections were because of his prison record. But one day, the boss of a construction crew, who desperately needed help, decided to give him a chance.

Steven worked hard and showed he was dependable. He quickly learned different skills and soon became the crew member everyone turned to when they had questions. He also worked efficiently and often accomplished more than two or three other men.

Each day brought new challenges, but Steven never looked back. The memory of his mother’s love for him kept him moving forward until his life settled into somewhat of a normalcy with regular day-to-day challenges.

This Mother’s Day, Steven posted a picture of his mother’s tombstone with a caption that said, “Mom and I had a nice visit today.”

He then told about sharing with her the ways his life had changed. He said he was sad that she had never seen anything but the troubled side of his life, having not lived long enough to see him become a positive, contributing member of society.

As Steven talked to her, he said he cried a lot. Those tears washed away much of the pain and regret he felt for the sorrow he had caused her. He said he only wished she could see him now.

As I read his post, I thought she probably can, and she’s smiling.