I've been telling Mom for the last few weeks, that if she wants to come and sleepover at 411; it has to be soon. I'll be heading south again on the Saturday after Christmas, weather permitting.
As we're about to wrap up our Tuesday/Wednesday pj party, I am struck by: the evolution of our time together; just how much we accomplished; some evidence of letting go; the depth of our conversations; and, the eeriness of role reversal.
It began with Christmas cards and ended with decorating a fresh evergreen wreath to put on the front door.
It was two days of "togetherness": writing/addressing almost 30 Christmas cards, cooking together, eating together; getting the house ready for the carpet to be cleaned; looking at vintage sheet music together, searching for a huge plastic bag full of stuffed bears, attempting pot holder rugs; and, decorating the wreath together.
I had to laugh at us some. Of course, Sam joined in whenever she could. I'd already decided I was holding off on my own holiday cards until I could get to some peace, quiet and normalcy that is my life in New Orleans. Here we were, almost a day and a half of getting Mom and Dad's cards done together. While the carpet was being cleaned, our cleaner told Mom that the bears might be "worth some money".
We had time. We were cloistered in the former dining room together while he cleaned, so I got on ebay and looked at prices. It was good, because now Mom knows that we don't have real "Beanie Bears" and that vintage sheet music will not make you rich...the best I saw was $100 for a piece of music signed by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings. Now, I do love Waylon and Willie...at another time in my life I might have made that purchase and had it framed and hung on Columbus Street.
Mom returns to Hidden Lake today. I will treasure: our card conversations, the collectible epiphanies; seeing her finally accept the love of and love my Sammie cat; listening to her sing every piece of vintage sheet music she touched; the attention she paid each and every bear; the news that she'd never chopped a mushroom before; and, for the first time in two years she didn't say "go away", but instead said:
"I couldn't have done all of this without you." And, that's something to be shared with the rest of us!
A special note of thanks to Kat for providing the mailing list and Tom for bringing us that beautiful, aromatic wreath for the door!