Saturday, October 17, 2009

#155 A Mother's Work is Never Done

Three score and ten. Sounds impossible to me. I can't believe that my Mum is that old. I can't believe I've been around for most of that time. And I can't believe that she does the things she does while bearing the weight of all those years on her shoulders with such grace and generosity.

Pennsyltuckians are volunteers. In my family that means working for the church, the scouts, the community, the schools. Dad and Mom taught us that there are important things outside of our own skins, and that we ought to give them some attention. So Mom goes to quilting and Eastern Star and choir and school concerts and even sits through the occasional ball game if the weather isn't too bad. She has broken her leg, torn up her knee, had half of her thyroid removed, buried her parents and husband, and raised me and in spite of all the scars those ordeals have left, she keeps on going. Mum looks for the place in the world where she can do the most good, and she goes there. She is no isolated little old lady.

Three weeks ago, Mrs P called Mum to tell her that I had been admitted to the hospital. That was Friday afternoon. On Saturday morning my 70 year old mother packed her bags loaded up the car, and drove the eight hours from Pennsy' to 'Tucky to be with my wife and me. She was at every visiting hour. She drove to pick me up when I was discharged. Mom drove me to most of my outpatient treatments. She stayed with us for three weeks. This morning we kissed her goodbye and sent her back up North where the grandkids are pining for her and my sisters are wondering if she's ever coming home. She's coming home today, you guys.

And I am going to miss her. Mrs P and her clan are some of the weepingest folks you are apt to encounter. So this morning she wept. Mom got a little misty too, but we Northerners are used to a colder climate where moisture on the face can cause little frostbitten streaks down the side of the nose if the wind is right. We hold our tears pretty tightly. But Mom and I shared a few today. They were joyful tears.

There are moments shared with the ones you love that you will remember your whole life. A first kiss. Learning to cast a fishing lure. The day you finally let the clutch out without stalling the car. The broken heart that sent you crying in your mother's arms while she held you and couldn't think of anything to say except, "Oh, Honey. I'm so sorry."

The last three weeks just became one of those times for me. I'll never forget what Mum did for us here in the cold Kentucky rain. She saw where she was needed, and she came. I was raised by a great, great woman. I thank God that I lived long enough to realize it.

I love you, Mom. Thanks for always being there.


1 comment:

  1. This is beautiful and I am privileged to be among your readers. I hope you're feeling better.


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