I know you think I'm being dramatic. And maybe I am, who cares. There was never anything wrong with dramatic. But, I'm not. My parents left town on Monday and they aren't coming back. How do I know? Because of a little book (and a giant inkling).
Because when they moved here nearly two years ago I gifted my mother a book to identify Birds of North Carolina. And, as they packed up their U-Haul, they returned a few things:
Our folding chairs, the fan, my easel, a flatware divider, and the book to identify Birds of North Carolina. Contrary to the way things are going, this is not a "woe is me" post. But a "things I love (and will miss) about my Mom" post. Because Utah is very very far from here and there are a million things I still want to do with my Mom before we die.
And, she just turned 59 a few days ago!
I will miss this...her, here, with these girls and that boy. This most of all. But also, standing hip to hip at my sink scrubbing saucers and saute pans. I will miss her flopping her wrist on my shoulder, cocking her head, and asking me, "How ARE you?" Why does that always make me cry? Then there's the time when they lived in our guest room for 9 months and on Dr. Gooch is Gone nights I would flop my body on her bed and watch her with my Dad and her fabric and rolls of paper and bowls of beads and tools and talk. Just talk.
Then, of course, there are the meals, often in our home and often in theirs where we would eat together, put the children to bed, play a few games, and laugh and tease--in that order. Until everyone was too tired to do any of those things anymore.
Don't forget our few Ukulele jam sessions where we sang and strummed and sometimes sounded not bad. I will miss getting better with you on the Uke. I will miss the nights you came over to sleep with me in my bed after the Larceny when the Doc was gone.
I try not to have regrets. But I do. I regret that we didn't go on walks together. That we only met for lunch once. That I didn't hug her tighter each time she walk up those steps into our bitty Cottage. Then of course, that we never took the book to identify Birds of North Carolina on a bird watching expedition.
I remember the Mother of my childhood as smooth, happy, gentle, fun, and kind. I don't know how you've managed it, Mom, but you've gotten smoother, happier, gentler, funner, and more kind with age.
Please don't stay away too long. And enjoy your lovely lovely desert. I love (and miss) you.