The other day was my mom’s birthday. It was a “big” birthday, as she likes to say. A real
I thought and thought about what to do for her birthday. I wanted it to be a grand gesture. Something that would take her breath away. Something she would remember.
It crossed my mind to have the florist send the same number of roses as she is years old. But then I stopped myself. I was afraid her home would look too much like a funeral parlor. And then all those roses would die. How depressing.
I had to give it some more thought. What would she really like? What would anyone her age really like? I can’t do anything about the little aches and pains that have popped up over the years. And unfortunately, the friends she has lost are gone forever. What she most certainly does not need is more stuff. This woman has more than enough.
That’s when it finally dawned on me. She wants what we all want-time with the people she loves. Fortunately I’m one of those people. I booked the flight immediately.
My brother and sister-in-law conspired with me. He picked me up at the airport and she and the kids picked up Mom. We got to the restaurant first and waited near the bar.
It was raining outside and inside was practically deserted when they arrived. My mom registered my brother first, after all he was supposed to be there. Then she looked at me, uncomprehending. You could almost see the wheels turning, before she finally figured out that I was really there. I walked to her and she grabbed me and started repeating, “I can’t believe it, I can’t believe it.” It could not have been more perfect.
That one perfect moment was worth every penny of the airfare. It was worth waking up at 3:30 AM, and flying Cross country squished in a tiny little seat. It was worth going through security, and worth asking for the seatbelt extender. Yes I needed it this time. It was worth everything.
I wanted it to be a moment she would never forget, I didn’t realize it would be one that I will never forget either.