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On Baggage

image from theexaminer.com

“We all have baggage; let’s resolve to only have carry-on” – Anonymous

I’ve got a trip coming up that I’m excited and a little nervous about: a trip “home”  to visit Mom on the family farm.

What I hope for most is lots of uninterrupted time with her.   Time to talk, time to laugh, time to reminisce and time to make new memories.

When you see your mother only once a year, you can get a little stingy with how those minutes are spent.

Don’t want to share. Don’t care to go see so and so. Don’t really want anyone to know I’m there.

I want to linger in the morning sunshine, drinking coffee with her and forget that I’m “on the clock” and will have to board a plane again soon. I want to stay up too late watching the evening news peppered with our opinions on world events and family nuances. I want to stand at her stove and cook for her while singing to Willie, Elvis and Roy, like we did when I was a girl.

I just want to spend time with her.

I have one sister who has embraced my plan.  She “gets” it.  She lives nearby and is with Mom often. She’s seen her slow down and understands when I say, “Please don’t schedule too much while I’m there; I just want to be with her.”  She knows we’ll have a few outings or times when we’re all together for she wants to be near me, too.

I have another sister who’s informed me that I “just don’t get it.”  That she’s expecting me to come home and rifle through Mom’s things and convince her to move off the farm and closer to her. Which Mom doesn’t want to do.  The last thing I’m going to do is land on her doorstep and start doling out orders.

Pity the fool who tries it! Heh heh. 

I’m mindful of the fact that Mom’s getting older. We all are.

I’m mindful of the fact that things are changing and some decisions will need to be made.   But, in my mind, she gets a say, too.

So … instead, what I’m focusing on are those morning moments of sunshine and coffee, of old photo albums and a lemon loaf she’s made just for me.  I’m not a tourist; I’ve been there before.  I just want to be with her.

And I’m determined to arrive with only carry-on.

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Categories: Attitude, Determination, Family, Forgiveness, Friendship, Growth, Humor, Life, Opinion, Personal, Relationships, Self Discovery, Share, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , | 20 Comments

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20 thoughts on “On Baggage

  1. Oh, have a wonderful trip! I get to see my mom about every two weeks. So blessed. She and I are going to re-paint the front gate out at the ranch in a couple of days. She still loves to do that kind of stuff. Happy for you both.

    • thank you, Lissa. I’m sure we will have a great time together. It’s bittersweet b/c it’s not that often. I used to try and jam as much as possible into that time .. now I jam as much of HER into my time as I can. Happy gate painting! 🙂 (( My trip’s not for another month though.. sigh )).
      MJ

  2. I wonder, as I look back, “when did my parents get so old? When did I grow up and start to become someone who asks the kinds of questions that they know are coming yet don’t want to answer quite yet?” Drives down gravel roads. Looking through photo albums. Holidays long past but still fresh in my memory. Where did it go? It’s a bittersweet time. Let ’em know you love ’em and thank them for what they’ve done.

    • Isn’t that the truth, Rich? I know what you mean … time passes and I am ever so aware that it’s going by just a little too quickly for my liking. I aim to just “be” with her. What we do and who we see has little to do with it; the joy will be in being together. Cheers! MJ

  3. (sigh) I envy you going to visit your Mom. Please give her an extra hug for me. I hope you get to spend your time with her EXACTLY as you wish!

  4. Please make sure to include the following quote in your soon to be published book of posts. ““We all have baggage; let’s resolve to only have carry-on” – Anonymous”
    Okay – go visit your Mom first. Enjoy the time TOGETHER. The book can wait. Just ‘be’ with your Mom. 🙂 Thank you, MJ!

    • You are so kind, Lenore. One of these days .. in the meantime, life’s full and busy and good, right? I am looking forward to my trip, wish it was next week!! MJ

  5. Ha,Ha. “Pity the fool who tries it! Heh heh.” Have a stress free relaxing time with your mom and enjoy every minute. Cherish those cups of coffee and glasses of lemonade made just for you. I think you will knowing what you do. What a wonderful thing to be looking forward to.

    • That’s exactly what I’m striving for – a stress free time with her. There will be some who will attempt to “tell” her but let’s just say it won’t end well for them. I am smart enough to not go there … I just respect her too much.
      It’s just a month away 🙂 MJ

  6. My Mother says that often when she visits me here on the farm: “I don’t want to share you.” 🙂 But isn’t that what every mother wants, for their child to just want to be with them, no strings attached?
    Hope you have a wonderful time with your momma, and hope to see a few pics if you get the chance.

  7. I know exactly how you feel – My time with my Mom is precious
    Enjoy your visit and your “Mom time”

  8. Visiting from Diana’s blog…you had me from the first line (I love quotes, and ADORE that one!) I’ll be following for sure! Soak up every breath of unscheduled air (I think it’s better air, don’t you!) and enjoy the time with your mom!

  9. Your mom is lucky to have such a compassionate, loving and understanding daughter. I wish you time that slows down while you’re there, laughter and fulfilling conversation, and no regrets.

    • Awww … thank you Terri, you make me smile and cry a little bit all in one. I aim to be all that to her but the truth is she is everything you just described. Being so far away is very hard but, as you said, I aim to laugh, live and enjoy our time together without one single regret.

      Cheers! MJ

  10. Hey, I’m so happy you’re getting to visit your mom. It’s obvious from the way you write about her that you have a lot of love and respect for her.
    I understand what you’re going through. It’s so hard when you see change coming, but you don’t want to rush it! I see difficult choices coming to some of my family members, and have a lot of the same feelings.
    I hope your visit will be filled with laughter and good walks down memory lane, but also special new memories. And I hope that you and your sisters and mom can all find a peaceful solution to the decisions on the horizon.
    Safe travels!
    Sheila

    • thank you Sheila; you just described not only the situation I’m in but my hopes for how to navigate going forward. Cheers! MJ

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