Yesterday my mom and I had a fun lunch date. We talked about the kids, my blog, work, her upcoming trip to California to visit her best friend, and just life in general. The time flew. We hugged and promised to talk again before she left Sunday. Today at lunch I was hugging her in the hospital after her car accident. Her knee fractured after smashing into the dashboard. Airbag deployed, leaving the telltale burns. Knee immobilizer, pain medication and a walker became the norm. In an instant, plans crumbled, and her wounds took their place.
So much can change in 24 hours… I am thankful that she wasn’t more severely injured. I am grateful at the kindness of neighbors who called me and let me know which hospital she would be traveling to by ambulance. I am relieved I didn’t have to see the crumpled remains of her car. Finally, my father now sees the benefits of his cell phone, which he doesn’t use; instead, he had to be paged at the YMCA and never really got the full story, then went home to find the wreckage and was frantic worrying about my mom. My sister is using her exceptional skills tonight to care for my mom. Friends brought them food and checked in on them.
Sometimes we need the shocking to make us realize what is important. And special. And irreplaceable. So much changed in 24 hours…but maybe there is a silver lining. Maybe we will learn to tell people we love them each and every day. To make plans. Spend time together. Show love even when we don’t feel much like it. Just drop everything because a phone call comes in and says, “Everything else stops. Just do this. THIS is what matters.”
We are officially on Spring Break. Maybe grandkid therapy will be just what my mom needs. She needs to be reminded that she matters. (I joked with her that she didn’t have to go to the extreme of breaking a kneecap to find out!) But isn’t that what we ALL crave? To feel valued and necessary? To have someone say to us my favorite line from The Help: “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”
I’ve got to take a few days to do this with my family and friends. Hopefully you will too.