Although my mother Dolores passed away a few years ago today is a very special day for me. It's the day that I take a few extra moments and try to recognize all that she taught me, sacrificed for me, and did for me throughout the years.
My parents split up and she was suddonly a single mom when I was just four years old. And although a few of my older siblings had left home, there were still four of us left to care for. I really have no idea how she did it. How did she keep it all together so well? Now that I'm an adult I understand a bit of why she would stop at the coffee shop on the way home and rest after a long day's work, have a coffee and some quiet time before heading back to our house. When you're a child you don't understand. Now I do.
Why is it so easy as a teenager and young adult to go out with your friends and leave your mom at home? Probably because kids think that parents will always be there. That nothing could ever change that drastically; so they become very self-involved. If I could tell a teenager one thing about life it would be that times with family are to be cherished, because although moms shouldn't go away, sometimes they do. And getting them back sometimes doesn't happen.
And of course despite all my crazy moving around to different states and even other countries Mom was always there back home, answering every letter and phone call. What a priviledge it was to be able to call her up and ask her how to get a ketchup stain out of a shirt, or, what was Grandma's middle name again?
For a few of my adult years I lived in Michigan near Mom. We would go for coffee often. I'm getting an idea of what going for coffee meant to her as I realize just how hard she had to have worked just to keep food on the table. For me going for coffee meant I would have some quality time with her. I think it's the one thing I miss the most; going for coffee with Mom. Recently a family member was visiting and we went for coffee, and of course I had my hopes up that the experience would be special... but there we were in a coffee shop and I had my coffee and she had her six dollar mochafrappawhatever and it hit me that perhaps you really can't go back. My heart remembers those simple fifty-cent cups of coffee at a greasy spoon in Michigan, but now the world is having six dollar coffees that are hard to pronounce.