I let myself into Mom and Dad’s house with my key. I found Dad snoozing peacefully in his recliner and Mom sitting quietly on the love seat, a public television show playing rather loudly on the set near her.
I put the food I’d brought over into the fridge and then sat down on the love seat by Mom. I knew if I got her up for her bath she would start hollering and disturb Dad’s nap, so I settled in for a quiet visit.
Mom finds comfort in sitting next to someone these days. She leaned her head against me and kept gently tapping my arm and fiddling with the hem of my shirt. Eventually I asked her if she knew who I was and she said, “Raymon?”
“No, I’m Cheryl.”
“Cheryl…” she repeated. “I like her.”
She smiled so sweetly and when she smiles she seems like the mom I’ve always known. I snuggled in the love seat, close to the warmth of my mama, and listened to the author on the public TV telethon, around her age, telling stories of his childhood growing up on a farm.
And I sat there, Mom gently tapping on my arm. And I thought about how she had grown up on a farm with no electricity and lots of hard work. And I think of all the history she’s seen in her life and of how little she now remembers.
I asked her if she’d lived on a farm and she said she didn’t know. I asked her if she’d picked cotton and she quickly answered, “Oh yes!”
When Dad woke awhile later I helped Mom with her bath. Afterwards I was trying to zip the back of her dress up but she kept trying to walk away. I kept saying, “Stop. Stop. Stop.” And Mom kept saying, “Go! Go! Go!” as she kept walking. And I chuckled to myself as I tried to zip her up before she got away.
Later, as I was leaving, Dad walked me to the door and thanked me and told me I was precious. But I’m thinking how precious Mom and Dad are and how precious my time with them is.
And of how sweet it is to see my daddy get a much needed nap as I snuggle cozy with my mama. And I’m thankful for the quiet moments of peace and gentleness God sends in the middle of the go, go, go of life. And I’m thankful for the smiles and tenderness.
And I’m grateful that whether we are going or stopping; whether we are treasuring tender moments or tackling ever changing challenges– one truth holds steady. God is with us and giving us grace for the journey.
~ A memory from 2013.
I know it was hard, but what tender memories you have now. ‘What a blessing you journaled all this to remember and be able to share with us. I appreciate your writings.
Oh thank you so much, Evelyn! It has blessed me to journal and then read the memories again. I feel doubly blessed when I hear it encourages others too. God bless you! Cheryl