It doesn’t matter how old you get. There are times when only your mother will do. I know I am so lucky to still have mine.
When Mom is here my food comes on plates and in glasses and cups – eating from containers is frowned upon. And I know she’ll wash those plates, glasses and cups, so I don’t have to.
When Mom is here, the kids are enveloped in everything they need – new toys, books, sugary treats, excellent lullabies, and abundant love.
When Mom is here, I remember how I got so strong and so weird and so unwilling to stoop to convention. (Maybe I also remember how to scale all that back a little.)
As a kid, when I had problems at school, Mom would listen to my tale of woe, and then ask me if I wanted her to punch the perpetrator in the nose – it didn’t matter if it was another kid, or a teacher. I knew by her saying this that I had her in my corner, and that I had nothing to be afraid of. I also knew I could never, ever accept her offer, being certain that she would actually go through with it.
Two weeks ago today, when I first started feeling lousy, I called Mom to chat. She had been in a serious car accident minutes before, and the ambulance had yet to arrive. Even though she had glass in her mouth and her leg was pinned in place, she answered the phone, because I had called. I knew she was going to be OK, because she had answered the phone. And she was. The EMT had to put his face very close to her face while they extracted her from the car, and she asked if he was going to kiss her. (Not on our first date! he replied.)
Mom has been through a lot recently – not one, but two bad car accidents, a broken knee, weeks of tending to my dad after a brain hemorrhage, a lost iPhone turning into a stolen one, her sister and brother-in-law in declining health – and yet here she is supporting me, as always. The week has been like a good dream of childhood with her here, despite how awful I’ve felt. I’ve slept like a baby during my naps, released of a need to keep my schedule. She has kept me in check when the steroid-crazy threatens to overwhelm me.
And… she leaves tomorrow. I love you, Mom.