~ postcard art: Pam Garrison
It's been 25 years since my mom and I lived in the same town. I left St. Louis with Andy and our 2 little girls to move to Chicago. Mom went to California with her husband.
There was alot in between, distance, years, stuff. We both missed out. These last few years have been especially hard for her with the death of her husband, her son (my brother) and my father. Every day became one long endurance test, too often ending in despair. I could hear it on the phone, see it when I visited. But when she came to visit us, the adventure put some of the "old Mom" back in place.
So when she was here in September, we spent most of the visit looking around at apartments near me. And we found one. 10 minutes away in an older pre-war building on the river, in a vintage Mayberry small town, with a senior center a block away, and lots of men her age to flirt with. Seriously. Mom is always happier when there is someone to charm. She's funny and smart and opinionated. Feisty and independent as a teenager- minus the car.
Today begins her move. Tomorrow I pick her up at the airport and next week sometime the truck will be here with her things. We have lots of support from my own family and friends who already have offered to help. It's a great life here in NY and all of us are excited to have Mom come and join in. She's excited too. I'm not kidding myself though - it isn't going to be easy. I wonder if I could do what she is doing now- at 79, pick up, move off to another part of the country, without a car, without a clue about where I was landing, just hoping my kids would see me through.
I noticed in yesterday's post that I used the word hope about 10 times. I went back and edited, but couldn't help thinking that it probably wasn't an accident. Hope is the first word on our lips these days for all things. Just have to look ahead with hope over fear knowing that this is our best chance at change for the better. Hear that, Mom? Pack your party shoes.
Th' longest lane will have a turning. ~Elizabeth Gaskell, 1848