My dear mother just celebrated her 85th birthday.
And she did it the way she does everything--with grace and class.
She is a most incredible woman.
Isn't she stunning?
For the present my mother lives in Florida.
My sister lives in upstate New York, my brother in Seattle, and I in Texas.
We had not been together for over 5 years and many before that.
Just to test Mother's heart rhythms, we surprised her
by flying in to celebrate this momentous occasion without her foreknowledge.
She was shocked but no defibrillator was necessary and we spent 5 glorious days talking, eating, laughing and loving.
My brother, younger by 6 1/2 years, has an amazing camera
with lenses and such and he took a ton of pictures.
However, PhD and all that aside, he has no clue how to download
these spectacular pictures to email them to me,
so I will have to use the few I took.
On his behalf he is a super guy and kept us laughing from dawn till...well, almost the next dawn. Our time together was so special that we didn't want to waste it with such mundane activities as sleeping.
The night before I left home, my husband commented, "I'm glad I won't be there. You all talk at the same time and no one listens to anyone else. So noisy."
And I agreed. We are noisy, we interrupt incessantly, we get louder to be heard, but--we DO listen! Maybe it's a New York or Long Island thing (where are roots are), but we have mastered the skill of talking and listening simultaneously. And I find it exhilarating to talk, eat, listen, and laugh all at the same time.
There's no waiting for your turn to speak. This is a communication style we are perfectly comfortable with and, if one of us grows quiet, the others pounce to find out what's wrong.
In all this talking, eating (most meals lasted at least 3 hours!), and beach walking , we solved most of the world's problems, of course. No topic was off limits and we are very much individuals with 4 distinct opinions. Remarkably, we argued agreeably and enthusiastically.
It wasn't always that way, but the years and our life experiences have melded into mutual respect and admiration for one another. And, out of love and concern for our mother, we paused from our own responsibilities and united to honor her. She deserved that.
My smile remained on the entire flight home as the delightful memories
of our time together played over and over.
Happy Birthday, Mother Dear.
May God continue to bless each of your days as
He always has until today.