Today was Mom’s birthday. I wanted to write something to post earlier today, but, as the day progressed, various projects and meetings took the time until now. Probably that’s how Mom would have it,though; mostly she didn’t celebrate her birthdays. In fact, it was pretty easy to sneak a surprise birthday dinner upon her, since she routinely forgot the day anyway. Her 80th was pretty significant, but the Lifestyle Center kitchen crew were able to surprise her with a healthy cake and bring it in all lit up with candles without her even seeing them coming! So, it would probably make her happy that the day was busy and rewarding with a minimum of fuss over what day it was.
It’s amazing how, even though you may have known someone for years, one continues to learn new things about them. Today, we had grits and gravy for breakfast, a meal we had hundreds of times while I was growing up, and many more at Winona after my kids came along. Kelly and I thought it was one of Mom’s favorites; after Dad passed away, Kelly said we’d come up and fix grits and gravy, but Mom said, “No, that was Dad’s favorite, I really don’t care for grits.” What a surprise! Mom put her needs and even preferences on the back burner, while making other’s needs and desires prominent.
After Mom had her first stroke in 2013, she made some steady progress toward recovery. While unable to speak much, she did manage to communicate with a combination of sign language and partial sentences (although many words unintelligible), and one thing she really got excited about was the ride in the golf cart that one of our close friends would give her nearly every day. On her birthday, May 15, 2014, we decided to get her a used golf cart that she could use to get around. We took her to Country Life for lunch, and then went the few minutes drive to the golf cart dealer. As soon as we came around the corner and Mom saw the golf carts, she said, “Oh, yes!” with an excited clap of her hands. Mom had so many happy times driving around in her little red golf cart, and when she couldn’t drive any more, it still brought happiness as she rode around with Kelly or others who took her around to all the places she couldn’t walk to anymore.
I hope you had a wonderful day. Looking forward to Jesus’ soon return!