I've been thinking about my mother more than usual lately. On many occasions since she died nineteen years ago, I've wanted to ask her how she felt about life at my age. Usually this happens when I experience a "trauma" of sorts and I wish she were here to advise or take care of me.
Today I have been wondering how she would react if she were back for a visit. Would she be surprised that we are going to inaugurate an African-American president of the United States? My guess is she would. But unlike her more conservative husband (my father), I think she would be very pleased.
I wonder if she could believe that at seventy I ride my bike to work every day. Two things there—working at seventy AND riding a bike to work. In fact she would never have expected me to exercise by choice, let alone lift weights three times a week, especially at my advanced age.
Mom was a lady of leisure, not rich, but still of leisure. Of course she volunteered for good causes like all of her friends, but the ladies played bridge and went to charity luncheons and baked pies for their families during the week. They slept on ironed sheets. They hadn't spent junior years abroad. They did live through the big depression, and she would be surprised that we are at least on the brink of, if not in, the worst depression since then.
When Mom was my age, she had been a widow for about two years. She missed my father very much, and used to say that the hardest part of losing him was not having him with her to discuss the events of the day or what the children were up to.
I don't think of her every day, but when I do, I wish she could visit her grand children and great grandchildren. She would be so proud of them.
I'd also like to tell her that she was a terrific mother, and I still miss her.