Some of you know I am heading out tomorrow … off to spend a week with Mom, and our first Mother’s Day together in 29 years. The numbers astound even me. Of course I’ve visited many times since I left Canada at age 22 but I’ve never been there on Mother’s Day. This is just as much for me as it is for her, I can admit that.
Stepping out of one world and through the doors to another. Away from smart phones and conference calls, instant messaging and project meetings. Away from traffic and busyness and into the arms of a tiny-faced lady who will hug me with everything she’s got.
I’ll step away from stewarding my team, being a wife, Mom and Nana and back to the roles of daughter, (little) sister and “that girl who used to sing and play guitar.”
I’ve got a few things ready – including a funeral outfit – because, as Sissy pointed out, “I thought you’d want to attend and you’ll surely see lots of people you know.” And she’s right. That’s how small towns are. Funerals, weddings, gatherings; regardless the circumstance, the timing is such that I can take Mom, pay my respects and have a visit. And some pie.
My carry-on bag is already heavy and full – full of books for Mom. A friend pointed out airline weight limits; I just smiled and said, “Yeah, I know.” Oh there’s a fee? Whatever, I’ll pay it. She didn’t get it and I didn’t expect that she would.
You see, when you only see your Mother once a year, you can get defensive with anyone who tells you how to do it.
Sissy will meet me at the airport and we’ll cry. Then we’ll laugh at our sappiness and enjoy the country drive together. We’ll stop in town to pick up a few things and it’ll take longer to check out because I’ll end up chatting with a neighbor at the till. Yep, when you see your sister only once a year, you tend to savor little moments like those.
So after I land at the farm and the hugs are exchanged, the chats and laughs will begin. I’ll get up early and go for walks down our country road with my sister-in-law and her farm dog, Stevie. On the way back I’ll stop by Dad’s shop where I’ll find a brother or two and chat about whatever topic we fancy. When I get back Mom will be at the table and there we’ll linger in that morning sunshine, sipping coffee and ignoring the ticking of the clock and the knowledge that I have to board again soon.
We’ll stay up late peppering the air with our opinions on world events and family nuances. I’ll stand at her stove and cook for her and sing along to Willie, Elvis and Roy, just like we did when I was a girl. We’ll sip tea and nibble the lemon loaf she’s baked for me; she’ll fuss and I’ll let her.
We’ll gather at her house for a Mother’s Day brunch – about twenty of us – and she’ll beam at the noise and commotion that all of being together brings. We’ll miss those who can’t be there and every single one of us will feel Dad in the room.
And for seven days, I will ask those clocks to slow, just a little.
The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you. ~Anonymous