As I sit here this morning I can hear a pileated woodpecker not far off. Mourning doves, gold finches, orioles, chickadees, chipping sparrows, a grackle, a blue jay or 2 and an indigo bunting (that I’ve been hearing for the last few days but has yet to appear) are all gracing my yard with their presence at this moment. The sun hasn’t scared away the night completely either. I saw a bat swirling around up there, likely eating the mosquitoes that have kept me prisoner for the past several days. The Second Marsh Wetland is not far from my doorstep and although that has some great features about it, it has draw backs too, namely, bugs. But I digress...
My Mother has the most amazing memory. I know for a fact she can tell you what I’ve eaten every single time we’ve eaten together my entire life. As well as every little adventure or conversation we’ve ever had. I marvel at it, because my memory, frankly, sucks.
My Mom has always told me her happiest days were at home with the kids. That would stretch thirty-five years as she was having children 20 years before the kind of surprise, rather than afterthought came along, otherwise known as me. She never did have all kids living under her roof at the same time, so when everyone gets together she is in heaven. Imagine the memories for her.
My Mom’s longing for family presence has been a bit of a conflict for me over the years because as more of a free spirit, perhaps because I was the youngest and was left to wander and wonder a lot, family wasn’t a focus for several years. I was away traveling and living in other cities and countries. I never created my own family. The day I had to rescue my Dad from his first major mental break changed the course of my life since 1997, and I’ve found myself in family mode since, more so than I would have liked, if I’m perfectly honest.
But this came to me this week: For my Mom, when she has her kids around THAT is her walk in the woods, that is what makes her feel alive, those are the memorable moments.
It also came to me that the reason she remembers what I ate every single time we sat down together, is because those moments meant the world to her, more than I really understood until now.
Right now my Mom is crippled in her bed from several bad falls since my Dad died in the spring. She needs assistance with everything and is spending more time sleeping than not. Her incredible will has been slipping and that memory is slipping too, ever so slightly.
I know my sister is camping by her house this weekend and is spending the afternoon with her, so even though we try to schedule the visits where we’re kind of crossing paths, because the visits are part of the support plan, I’ll drive up there today because I know she’ll at least have 3 of her 4 remaining kids under the same roof and maybe we’ll even coax the forth to appear.
The moments are precious and in the not so distant future, we’ll only have memories.
Whatever you’ve got going on this weekend, remember to touch base with the elders in your life and consider how much you might mean to them, regardless of how busy your life is or what adventures you’re on.
Much Love xo
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