The Joy of Successfully Raising Your Mother

She’s Really Blossomed

Photo: Jordan Bray

My mother has a porch fashioned into an office for clients of her business. She’s a licensed foot reflexologist. The office is decorated in watermelons, hence the man whose modesty is being protected by a slice.

She’s closer to seventy-five than her sixties, but she looks in her sixties. Maybe it is her child-like nature.

Watching her sleep, her bandaged foot perched in the air, I was there to take care of her after a surgery over Christmas last year. She has come so far.

She was in and out of the hospital. Suicidal constantly. It’s been years and years since she needed to be inpatient.

My memories travel back to age fifteen. A serious suicide attempt. Visiting her in the hospital. Unconscious with tubes and IVs coming from everywhere as she appeared dead in the bed.

I’ll be practical for you. I’ll make sure the bills get paid.

She is compelled to type on the keys of her old typewriter. She’s a creator. A poet.

I’ll make sure dinner gets made. I’ll help the children with their homework.

She can’t get out of bed. She is deep in conversations with God. She is experimenting with another church.

I’ll get the kids to school. I’ll pick them up. I feel guilty for going to college, so I’ll take custody of two children while I’m in graduate school.

But now, she is independent. She stays away from cults. She’s made a lot of friends. She helps people out.

Bless the healing power of time. It’s a total turnabout. Mom’s senior years turn out to be about nurturing others.

Chances are I have a migraine. My spirit guides are Voltaire & Bierce. Considering making SJW into a religion. Genealogist

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