On Tears

A mother holds her children’s hands for a little while, but their hearts forever.

My mother is retired and I don’t get to see her as often as I wish. I am fortunate now to work in a location that is a 2 hour drive away, but even then, it’s still only a few times a year we are together because I’m so busy wearing my multiple hats and chasing my passion. So far this year, I’ve been to Florida 5 times and I haven’t seen her since New Years Day.

Last summer, she came to stay with me in paradise and watch my boys while I worked. It was a few weeks of close confinement with two boisterous kids, but we managed. Who wouldn’t living a block from the beach? Toss in a couple of weekend trips to the happiest place on earth, and the summer went by all too quickly. In contrast to the times we’d be together for only a few days during the year, the extended duration promoted a closeness we hadn’t had since I was in college. But unlike when I was in my early 20s, I was now a mother myself in my 40s, with years that hopefully spawned maturity. This time our life experiences were much closer in relation. It was a summer where we truly bonded as adults, as friends. I found out things I didn’t know about my mom—that she liked to drink tequila, had a wild side in her youth (so that’s where I get my impulsive nature that I keep under close wraps..), and a few other secrets I won’t share here. As the summer came to a close, I watched my youngest son and mother play on the shore while we waited for sunset. Seeing her interact with him, so patient, so kind, so loving, with her beautiful smile, I made sure to imprint the image in my mind and heart.

I have always hoped that if I could only capture a portion of her beautiful soul to be like her, I would be more than enough. She gave me the foundation of unconditional love and support that has made me all I am today. I am forever grateful that she is my mother. Yesterday, I was talking to her on the phone. She was asking questions about my work, and as I spoke she interrupted my explanation to say “I’m so proud of you. You’re so smart, you know so much I can’t believe it, and you do so many things. You’re so accomplished. I love you.” Tears filled my eyes. Those words meant more to me than I can ever express. My next trip, while the world falls into disarray, I need to see my mom.

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