Last weekend Mom got a surprise visit from her oldest granddaughter, my niece Sarah, who is a freshman at a university about 30 miles away. Mom was absolutely delighted to see her and just lit up like a Christmas tree.
We went to my neighborhood nail salon for some pampering (manicures for Mom and me, a pedicure for Sarah) and then back to my apartment, where I cooked us dinner. It’s the first time Mom has come over to my place since last Thanksgiving, when we had to haul her up the front steps in her wheelchair, one step at a time. I’ve been concerned about how she would manage the eight steps, but holding the railing on one side and my arm on the other, she did just fine. She loved being there, and I loved being able to have a quiet family dinner together.
Sarah and her mom spent last Easter with us, while in the area doing college visits. At the time, Mom was only recently out of the hospital – still on oxygen 24/7 and using a wheelchair. After we brought her home on Saturday evening, my niece kept telling me how impressed she was by how healthy and happy grandma is now. And it was very validating to hear Mom tell her “This is a wonderful place to live.”
On Sunday we all went to church together, which I know was really special for Mom. In the middle of the service, she put her arm around my shoulders and gave me a squeeze, saying softly in my ear, “I’m so glad I can go to church with you.” After the service, we went out for brunch and indulged in some fantastic pancakes with real maple syrup.
I am so thankful for these special times together. And above all, I’m grateful that Mom has returned to such good health –six months ago I thought that might never happen, that the only way she could go was down. In two weeks we will be flying to Ohio to visit family and make some more memories to treasure.