Tuesday, December 10, 2013


Almost six years ago I stopped by my mother's on a Sunday afternoon which I did quite often. When I arrived I found that her face showed it was purple. I asked her why she looked that way. She said that she had fell at church that morning. So I decided to stay with her for a little while until she felt a lot better. About a month later she asked if I would just stay and move in with her.  I now have been with her ever since. Neither one of us really knew whether it would work or not.  Being together has worked better than expected.  Once in a while she forgets that I am an adult and treats me like a kid. It is ok I just reminder her that I am an adult and she is fine with it. I think it is common for parents to forget that their children are no longer kids.  The main reason I didn’t think living with her would worked was I always thought she didn’t understand me very well.  Now I am not sure whether it as true as I had thought.  I think it is because of how our parents treat each child different.  I was the third child who naturally believes we are missing out, and the youngest and oldest always get the most attention. It is amazing that we think that way though it is not really true.  I now find that whenever I meet someone who knows my mother how much she talks about me, and appreciates that I look after her. My mother now is in her 90s; she is in pretty good physical condition for her age though she has some little ailments. Also, she continues to drive though she doesn’t prefer to drive at night. She gets in and out of her car slowly, and walks slowly for a little bit before doing just fine.  I think it is because she is afraid that she might fall. Another thing that is great is that her mind is still working fine.  She plays bridge, does crossword puzzles, and read books.  Her social life continues to move on. It can be the hardest part of getting old not having any one to interact with.  In our family she is the only one remaining from her generation.

My mother has had quite a life so far. I think we can all learn from the elderly especially our parents. My mother grew up in Edmonton, Alberta. She graduated from high school at sixteen years of age.  When starting in first grade her mother went to the teacher; was told there was no room in the class but her mother insisted that the teacher would make room.  My mother was the youngest of four children. When she started college at University of Alberta in Edmonton they required the students had to be seventeen years of age. My mother became seventeen the day school started.  Of course, it was the Depression so money was hard to come by, however, her eldest brother Bob paid for her first year of college. She majored in French, and minored in Germany.  When she graduated from college she went to Ottawa, Ontario seeking employment.  The Second World War started she worked for the censor department.  Because she had taken German her job was to read mail of prisoners of war who came to Canada. Of course, when the war was over the job was no longer available so she went to Paris. While in Paris she met a US A soldier who she married, and moved to Seattle.  In Seattle they had my older sister Barb.  When my sister was three they divorced. It was not an easy time since there was not very many single mother’s at that time.  She worked as a bank teller in Seattle when she met my father.  Barb would spend some time up in Edmonton with our grandparents.  Barb was five years old when my parents were married. Our dad was really good because he treated Barb like she was his own daughter. She never saw her father again. She found that he died while she was in college.  After my two brothers and I were in school my mother became a high school French teacher at Wilson High School in Tacoma. Also, she taught German on occasion depending how many students were taking French or German. She taught for twenty years when she retired.  During her teaching period she went back and got her master degree as well. She has also song in her church choir at St.John’s Episcopal Church since coming to Gig Harbor. She started the branch of the American Association of University Women in Gig Harbor as well.  So as you can see she has done a lot in her life besides raising four children. If you know her, or ever meet her you will find that she has a very good sense of humor, and that she has a saying for every occasion. At least that is what I call it. She has many things she can say, and I am blessed to have her as my mother.


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