Sunday, June 26, 2011

Life Lesson #1

Now I know the point at which you have to acknowledge your own mortality.

It happens when your mother has a heart attack and has to be Medevac'd from the idyllic Northern Neck to Richmond for treatment only five days after you sat on the dock with her watching the tide come in.

The woman who gave up flying in airplanes ten years ago has now had her first helicopter ride. Her assessment?

"There's a lot more water between here and there than I realized. But the ride was so smooth!"

It happens after she's had three stents put in her arteries and I walk in to her hospital room to find her smiling and wearing her usual pink lipstick.

When I comment on how good her lipstick looks, she says, "You're the third person who's said that!"

As someone who wears lipstick on her daily walk, I realize that the apple doesn't fall very far from the tree, even if the tree is a little less sturdy than it used to be.

It happens when she is made to stay flat in bed for hours after the procedure is over and gets hungry.

Her nurse brings in lunch, hands it to me, lays a towel over her chest and says with a grin, "Be gentle with her."

As I prepare a forkful of food for her, I tease her by saying, "Boy, we've come full circle, haven't we?"

Laughing, she says, "You just love it, don't you?"  What I love is teasing her about the absurdity of the situation and having her agree.

By the time I left her five hours later, she has scrutinized Venus' tennis dress, applauded Judge Judy's grammar corrections and assured me that Casey Anthony most certainly killed her daughter despite the trial not being over.

She goes home Wednesday morning and I can already tell she's going to be just fine.

But now I know that I won't always be.

At least with the lipstick, I can look my best until that day.


  1. oh honey!
    How are things today?
    How's your dad doing?
    You're going to have to tell me the details sooner rather than later - okay?
    I will be sending all my fellow heart patient best vibes her way, and your way.
    so sorry - and SO glad they were able to get her up and out and to somewhere they could treat her.

  2. Amazingly well. So well she's going home tomorrow morning instead of Wednesday!

    Don't worry, she's not going anywhere. As she likes to remind me, she can't die because I'm not married or taken care of (unlike my five sisters).

    Looks like she'll be around for a long time!

  3. As wrenching as the post-op, helicopter flight and operation were sure to be, it is wonderful news to read that your mother will make a full recovery.

    Another twist in a road with a happy resolve.

    I wish I could claim the same for two dear family members. Both were unexpected and my grief is profound. Each was within two days of the other.

    I have my love and cherished memories for each in my heart forevermore.

    More twists and turns, but today with a grieving heart.

  4. Yes, quite an unexpected twist, but that's how life works, isn't it?

    So sorry to hear of your losses.

    I feel fortunate that my Mom lives on to remind me to get on with it and find a soulmate, like she did at 22.

    The journey continues...

  5. Glad to hear she was able to go home early!